It is only the day after Labor Day and it seems as if the germs are already flying. Summer is barely in the past, it is still blazing hot, and folks around here and the schools seem to already be dropping like flies.
Last week, a bit of a stomach bug hit our house. During my sons’ Parents Night at school the teachers were already talking about how many kids were going home sick. We had several boys on the football team knocked down with it. There also seem to be cold bugs surfacing. This morning a client called to say she was coming down with a cold. Should she come work out with me or stay away to save me from having her germs jump on to me?
The rule of thumb for working out when you feel under the weather has always been the “neck down” test. If you have symptoms that are above the neck, like a runny nose, sore throat or a stuffy nose, it is generally believed to be okay to get some exercise. However, if the symptoms are below the neck, like an upset stomach, chills, fever, aches or a cough it is best to just listen to your body and give it a rest.
No one likes or wants to be sick, regardless if it is just a cold or worse. I can’t imagine that there is anyone out there that feels as if they have the time to deal with feeling bad! I definitely don’t want to fight off a bug right now, so I was most appreciative of my client staying away while feeling “germy”. However, since she did not feel bad and had a good energy level I still wanted her to get in some movement, so we decided it would be a great day for her to get in a nice walk.
I always feel that if you are feeling down or having some illness symptoms, your body is trying to tell you something. It is likely telling you to slow down. Get some rest. Tone down your normal routine. It is telling you to forego a “sweat like crazy” workout for something a little more low key.
If you find yourself feeling as if you are coming down with a cold, there are still some great ways to get in a workout that will do your body good, but also allow your body the time it needs to fight off a bug or recover from one.
Try some of these when you feel a cold or have “above the neck” symptoms:
Yoga at home, online or with a DVD
Pilates at home, online or with a DVD
Take a bike ride
Light weights or a light body weight workout at home
Most importantly, listen to your body. If it makes you feel worse, if it is too difficult to breathe, if it makes you feel light headed or dizzy, forget it and give your body the rest it needs.
Secondly, while doing your exercise, keep it to yourself. At home. Away from the gym or studio or class. Keep your germs to yourself!
During this time make sure you are taking your vitamins, drinking plenty of water, getting Vitamin C and giving your body the rest it needs. Feed yourself good, nutritious foods to keep your energy level at its best. Water packed foods are great to help make sure you are staying well hydrated. Here is a recipe for one of my favorite feel better foods . . .
The favorite all time cure – Feel Better Crockpot Chicken Noodle Soup
Here’s to fighting off the colds, staying well and getting rest as we come into the Fall season!
Enjoy Your Day!