View Full Version : Walking and itching

07-02-2006, 10:36 PM
Hi everyone,
I've been trying to start a program of regular exercise since I usually lead a sedentary lifestyle. But I have a major problem: whenever I go for a walk, five minutes after starting at a normal pace I get this terrible itching sensation everywhere on my body, but mostly my legs, to the point that I have to stop every few steps to scratch in the middle of the street!! Has anyone experienced this while exercising? And if anyone has information on this I'd be glad to hear it.


07-03-2006, 09:10 AM
I have!!! And if I'm not mistaken, it's a circulation thing... Do your legs get hot also? Mine always did when I would get that itching... I don't know what you can do to stop it though...

So, I guess I wasn't really much help... hmmm... Sorry... LOL!

Maybe we will get our answers!!

07-03-2006, 09:58 AM
Me too!!! I haven't been diagnosed YET, still waiting for some tests to come in. Even though it's been a very long time since I've exercised, my legs would itch a lot while walking. I never thought anything of it until now. Things that make you go hmmmm.

07-03-2006, 01:40 PM
Wow - I thought my skin was just weird......

I remember running in grade school and getting really itchy legs. It happened to me the other day when I was walking my dog, feeling great, and running late, so I jogged for about .2 miles. Itchy! Itchy! Itchy! And always my upper thighs.

Most of the timeI'm fine with walking, though. Sometimes, even just sitting on the couch at night I'll get itchy legs.

Makes me go hmmmm.......

That's why I love this forum. I love knowing I'm not the only one weird stuff happens to.

07-03-2006, 02:08 PM
:lol: That's so weird. I've also noticed scratching my legs at odd times. I look if I have a bug bite or a rash, but see nothing. I just have these moments when I'm hanging out watching tv or just laying in bed, where I catch myself scratching. And it only happens on my legs. Hmmm... So happy to hear that its not just me with these itchy episodes. :wink:

07-05-2006, 06:04 AM
Hi! Me too! I noticed mine is worse after I have shaven my legs. Once I was foodshopping and it was winter so I had workboots on. I had been fine, then all of a sudden the itch was unbearable. It's almost 'beyond' itchy! At the time I thought it was just the combination of shaving my legs and the top of the workboots were rubbing on my shins. I actually grabbed a bottle of lotion off the shelf and opened it to put some on my legs. For me to do something like that, I had to be desperate. I also get itchy thighs for no apparent reason. This is so wierd! Oh, to have answers to these mystery questions!!

07-05-2006, 08:29 AM
Hi Everyone;
It is most likely the rise in body temperature that produces the itching, swelling, and small hives that some people experience after exercising. People who have this may also experience the same reaction in hot tubs, saunas, and see that they are more likely to get it on hot days. This rarely leads to anaphylaxis - the life-threatening drop in blood pressure that can be fatal in major allergic reactions.
Believe it or not, itchy legs is a common complaint, particularly among new walkers. Some experts believe that it may be due to poor circulation. If sluggish blood flow is to blame, the itching should subside as your body gets acclimated to your new activity.
Another possible cause is dry skin, a common curse during the dry winter months. Dry skin may itch when you're not exercising, but sweating due to exercise intensifies it.

Dermatologist Norman Levine, MD, professor and chief of the section of dermatology at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center, says that this condition is the most frequent cause of exercise-induced itching--and the easiest to treat. He suggests:

"Try applying a dry-skin moisturizer to your legs before you start exercising. Use products that are free of perfumes or dyes, which can cause allergic itching in some people. If that doesn't help, ask yourself the following questions:

Am I using any new cleaning or hygiene products?
Some soaps, lotions, and laundry detergents contain ingredients that can irritate sensitive skin. Try switching back to your former brand or formula.

Am I exercising in tights or long pants?
Something in the fabric could be triggering an allergic reaction. Or the leggings could be rubbing against and irritating hair follicles on your legs. Try wearing loose-fitting shorts when temperatures permit or inside on the treadmill.

Am I overdressed?
Excess heat and perspiration can cause itchy conditions such as heat rash or prickly heat. If you're bundled up in heavy sweats, try switching to lighter, more breathable fabrics.

In the event that none of this works and you're still stopped in your tracks by legs begging to be scratched, it's possible that you're allergic to exercise. No kidding! Exercise allergy is not common, fortunately, but it can lead to serious reactions that may require medical attention, says Gerald W. Volcheck, MD, an allergist and researcher at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.

If your doctor is not familiar with this condition, see an allergist who is. Some mild reactions appear to be caused more by a rise in body temperature rather than by the exercise itself. The best treatment for this type may be using antihistamines, avoiding exercise on hot and humid days, and reducing the intensity of your workout.

For more severe reactions, you may need to avoid certain foods or medications that precipitate a reaction, and carry medication in case of a serious attack. This form of allergic exercise reaction is rare, but if you experience choking, nausea, stomach upset, vomiting, or difficulty breathing with the itchiness, stop exercising and call a doctor immediately."

I hope that this has answered some of your questions :lol:

Peace and Blessings

07-07-2006, 09:53 PM
Hi Saysusie,

Thanks a lot for the information! Next time I exercise I'll make sure to follow these useful tips because at the meantime I've stopped walking outside (it's too hot anyway). I'm thinking of buying a treadmill after all... Anyway, thanks again and take care.


07-09-2006, 06:07 AM
I really thought I was crazy last night when I was slathering anti-itch cream on my legs. I've been spending more time walking lately because I'm losing feeling in my feet. When I type it out it seems like a wierd reason, but the sensation is gradually lessening so I'm trying to walk while I can still feel it. I just noticed the itching a few days ago and am relieved to know it's not just me.

Saysusie, thanks for the tips!

07-10-2006, 07:04 AM
You are most welcome everyone :lol: :D :)