Sunday, March 08, 2009

Should I Exercise When I'm Sick?

"Should I exercise when I'm sick?" is a common question I get. After 20 years of reading the research on it and testing my theory out on myself, I've come up with some general rules of thumb:

DON'T exercise if you have:
1. A fever.
2. Body aches (that aren't caused by your last workout. ;-))
3. Are throwing up.
4. Are coughing up copious amounts of green stuff.

Heard the rule, "It's okay to exercise if your symptoms are only from the neck up"? I'd agree with that. It's amazing how a workout can give you a boost of energy and clear your sinuses out, if you just have a mild cold. And moving your body can make you start feeling human again.

Pay attention to how you feel. If you feel like you can function, try a workout. Just take it easier, reduce the intensity if you start feeling more tired than normal, and by all means quit if you start feeling really bad.

While intense exercise temporarily depresses your immune system, moderate exercise boosts it!

Committed to your health,

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