Should you exercise when sick?
As we head into the end of winter, there are still a fair few lurgies flying around – colds, coughs and the flu can vary in symptoms from the mild sniffles to the dreaded aches and chills, but how sick should you be before you halt your exercise routine?
We take a look at whether you should exercise when sick to help you through this last part of winter.
What are your symptoms?
How do you feel? If you feel like you can’t handle your normal training plan, you know your body best; take a break or scale your workout back. You can also ask your doctor whether you should keep going.
If you’ve just got the sniffles, sneezing or a bit of a sore throat, you will likely still be able to do a workout close to what you would normally do.
If your body is achy or tired, you have the chills, a fever, chest congestion or an intense cough, your body needs time to recover from this and ‘pushing through’ could make your symptoms worse or lead to a longer recovery time from your illness.
The general rule
If your symptoms are above the neck, you should generally still be okay to do your regular activities. It could still be a good idea to scale back your workouts by reducing the duration or intensity.
If your symptoms are below the neck, it’s best to allow yourself time to recuperate until your symptoms ease up.
If you choose to go ahead with your workout, remember to also be mindful whether you are handling exercise equipment that other people will be using; if you’re still contagious you may spread your illness to other people!
Image / FreeDigitalPhotos.net – Ambro