Tips on exercising, or not, when you are sick
Stuffy noses, hacking coughs and aches all over—cold and flu season has arrived. Though your body may be aching and your nose running like a faucet, it can be difficult to decide if you should continue your exercise routine or take a temporary break.
"We all know that exercise is key to good health, but there are times that your body may need a break," said Keith Veselik, MD, director of primary care at Loyola University Health System. "Having to slow down when you're sick is Mother Nature's way of saying, 'Don't push it,' and it's reasonable to pay attention to that."
Whether a person should exercise or not can be disease-specific, according to Veselik. When sick our bodies already are battling against an illness and that takes energy. For instance, adding the extra stress of exercising while sick can be dangerous for a person with a heart condition. A person with diabetes may need to monitor blood glucose levels more often, especially if one is not eating and drinking normally. Being ill may raise glucose levels and exercise may lower them. If you do have a medical condition and are not sure whether you should exercise while sick, Veselik suggested you call your doctor.
Still, Veselik said a general rule is that it's OK to exercise if your symptoms are above the neck, such as a sore throat or runny nose.
"If you aren't feeling well but still want to exercise, lower your expectations about what you can do. You don't necessarily need to be in bed all day, but you can't expect to have the same level of energy as you would if you weren't sick," Veselik said.
But, it could be dangerous to exercise if you have the following symptoms:
- Shortness of breath or chest congestion
- Body aches
- Diarrhea or vomiting
- If you feel dizzy or lightheaded when you stand up
"Though sharing is usually a good thing, that's not the case when it comes to germs. If you are coughing and sneezing, just skip the Zumba class or basketball game and go for a walk or run by yourself instead," Veselik said. "Also, always wipe down machines at the gym. You never know who was using it before you."
He also warned to not get your expectations too high when returning to a normal exercise routine.
"People need to pace themselves when getting back into their routine. You won't be able to do as much right away and that's OK. Initially, it should be 50 percent effort and 50 percent duration. Listen to your body and increase according to what it tells you," Veselik said.
Provided by Loyola University Health System
- Exercising in your 50s, 60s, 70s and beyond May 23, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Intermittent exercise improves blood glucose control for diabetics Feb 02, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- How exercise helps you avoid a broken heart Jan 16, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Exercise more beneficial on an empty stomach, research shows Oct 30, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Don't Stress About De-Stressing Apr 30, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras
Apr 15, 2011 I'd like to open a discussion thread for version 2 of the draft of my book ''Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras'', available online at http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/0810.1019 , and for the...
- More from Physics Forums - Independent Research
More news stories
Talking on a hands-free device while behind the wheel can lead to a sharp increase in errors that could imperil other drivers on the road, according to new research from the University of Alberta.
Health 16 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—More than one in four of those eligible for new premium assistance tax credits under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) do not have a checking account and will not be able to receive premiums from ...
Health 18 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
After studying noise in one French Quarter neighborhood of New Orleans to determine whether or not noise levels exceeded municipal ordinances, Annette Hurley, PhD, Assistant Professor of Audiology at LSU Health Sciences Center ...
Health 19 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Young children who missed more than half of recommended well-child visits had up to twice the risk of hospitalization compared to children who attended most of their visits, according to a study published today in the American Jo ...
Health 20 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The individualisation of drug treatments to support patients to self-manage their conditions is a concept that sits at the heart of policy, but a recent study in BMJ Open shows that there is no concrete defini ...
Health 22 hours ago | 3 / 5 (1) | 0
Heart failure accelerates the aging process and brings on early andropausal syndrome (AS), according to research presented today at the Heart Failure Congress 2013. AS, also referred to as male 'menopause', was four times ...
40 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
Coenzyme Q10 decreases all cause mortality by half, according to the results of a multicentre randomised double blind trial presented today at Heart Failure 2013 congress. It is the first drug to improve heart failure mortality ...
46 minutes ago | not rated yet | 1
(AP)—Department of Justice lawyers have again asked a federal appeals court in New York to delay lifting age restrictions and prescription requirements on an emergency contraceptive popularly known as the morning-after ...
34 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
Mortality and length of stay are highest in heart failure patients admitted in January, on Friday, and overnight, according to research presented today at the Heart Failure Congress 2013. The analysis of nearly 1 million ...
41 minutes ago | not rated yet | 0
(Medical Xpress)—A new study by researchers in the US has shown that an ancient virus can be modified to help in the fight against the simian immunodeficiency virus SIV, which is the equivalent in monkeys ...
22 hours ago | 5 / 5 (3) | 0 |
Two mutations central to the development of infantile myofibromatosis (IM)—a disorder characterized by multiple tumors involving the skin, bone, and soft tissue—may provide new therapeutic targets, according to researchers ...
16 hours ago | 3 / 5 (2) | 0 |