Got the flu? Rest first, exercise later, experts say

January 22, 2013
Got the flu? rest first, exercise later, experts say
Sick athletes should put off vigorous workouts.

(HealthDay)—Although regular exercise has been linked to a strong immune system, people with flu symptoms, such as fever, extreme tiredness, muscle aches and swollen lymph glands, should avoid physical exertion while sick and for two weeks after they recover, according to the American Council on Exercise.

With the United States battling widespread flu activity, the council issued guidelines for athletes and others who exercise regularly. Above all else, flu sufferers should get plenty of rest, the group said in a news release.

Endurance athletes, including and triathletes, need to be extra careful, the council added. For 72 hours after a 90-minute, high-intensity endurance workout, these athletes may be vulnerable to illness. Intense workout routines temporarily elevate levels of the hormones cortisol and adrenaline, which lowers immunity, the experts explained.

For people with symptoms of the common cold, such as runny nose, headache and mild cough, such as walking is considered safe. The group noted, however, that it's a good idea for people with a cold to listen to their body and reduce the intensity of their workout until their symptoms are gone.

Anyone with a cold should avoid working out at a gym or in a group environment to reduce the risk of spreading their illness to others, the council said.

Explore further: Tips on exercising, or not, when you are sick

More information: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides more information on seasonal flu.

Related Stories

Tips on exercising, or not, when you are sick

November 8, 2012
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 ...

Arm yourself against colds and flu this fall

September 26, 2011
The first few breezes of fall bring with them not only the promise of a welcome change in season, but also the threat of colds and flu.

Couch potato or elite athlete? A happy medium keeps colds at bay

January 5, 2012
Battling colds and doing (or pledging to do) more exercise are familiar activities for most of us in January. But different levels of exercise can actually significantly increase or decrease your chances of catching a respiratory ...

Recommended for you

Dog walking could be key to ensuring activity in later life

July 24, 2017
A new study has shown that regularly walking a dog boosts levels of physical activity in older people, especially during the winter.

Alcohol to claim 63,000 lives over next five years, experts warn

July 24, 2017
Alcohol consumption will cause 63,000 deaths in England over the next five years – the equivalent of 35 deaths a day – according to a new report from the University of Sheffield Alcohol Research Group.

App lets patients work alone or with others to prevent, monitor, and reverse chronic disease

July 24, 2017
Lack of patient adherence to treatment plans is a lingering, costly problem in the United States. But MIT Media Lab spinout Twine Health is proving that regular interventions from a patient's community of supporters can greatly ...

Alcohol boosts recall of earlier learning

July 24, 2017
Drinking alcohol improves memory for information learned before the drinking episode began, new research suggests.

To combat teen smoking, health experts recommend R ratings for movies that depict tobacco use

July 21, 2017
Public health experts have an unusual suggestion for reducing teen smoking: Give just about any movie that depicts tobacco use an automatic R rating.

High-fat diet in pregnancy can cause mental health problems in offspring

July 21, 2017
A high-fat diet not only creates health problems for expectant mothers, but new research in an animal model suggests it alters the development of the brain and endocrine system of their offspring and has a long-term impact ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.