The Flu And Working OutBy Karen Buxton -
Is It OK to Workout if
You Have the Flu or a Cold?
Like it or not, the cold and flu season is upon
us, and if you have not already been hit with the dreaded crud, you may be next
Your training has been going along well, you have
built a solid base and then it happens you wake up one morning with a
scratchy throat, headache, cough and feeling like you have been hit by a truck.
Is it a cold, the flu?
You have a hard workout planned, and you
dont want to fall behind on with your training ... so, what do you
First, know that it is always better to skip a
workout when you are not feeling well, than it is to tough it out and risk
getting worse. If your symptoms are above the neck stuffy nose (clear
discharge) or a scratchy throat (no fever) it is OK to complete a short
workout at a low intensity.
If you start your workout and feel fine, keep
going at the reduced intensity. (Dont be tempted to go harder.) If you
begin the workout and things arent going well, turn around, head home and
call it a day.
If your symptoms are worse than the typical cold
indicators such as chest congestion, fever, chills, muscle aches and
malaise you should not attempt your workout. These are signs of an
infection or the flu virus, and exercising only makes you worse and delays
Complete rest should be on your schedule, until
these symptoms have gone. Once you are feeling "normal," it is suggested that
for every day of the illness, you complete two days of low-intensity training.
This may mean that you have to adjust your schedule, going back to the
base-building phase for a while.
Remember that exercising with an infection or flu
does not benefit your training. It may lead to more serious illnesses, setting
you back even more and possibly ending your season altogether. Train smart,
listen to your body and rest when needed. Youll be back on track before
you know it.
Karen Buxton coaches triathletes, duathletes,
cyclists and runners and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
here for the Centers For Disease Control site Flu Facts for