Running/Working Out When Ill

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Jan 2018
4:30pm, 3 Jan 2018
First-time poster!!
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Alison K
What do people think about running/working out whilst ill? I have been ill for a few weeks now and was continuing going to the gym at first but it was making me feel awful so I stopped. This bug I have doesn't seem to be shifting though and I'm now in two minds about whether I should start going back to the gym/out running or if I should just sit it out so as not to make it worse.

I'm not a naturally good runner and it takes a fair bit of time to build up my distance/speed and when I've taken time off before due to illness/injury I've noticed it doesn't take long before my speed/endurance starts to drop :( This makes me anxious to get back to training but at the same time I don't want to end up making myself worse and having to take more time off. Any advice/tips would be much appreciated.

Alison
Jan 2018
4:50pm, 3 Jan 2018
7,559 posts
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becca7
Welcome to Fetch. It's frustrating but if the bug isn't shifting and your body has responded badly to the gym you need to bide your time and focus on recovery and time that would have been spent at the gym would be better spent on sleep.
Jan 2018
4:50pm, 3 Jan 2018
1,254 posts
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philbo
As a rule of thumb above the neck good to good , below the neck rest , although I’m Sure someone will come along and prove me wrong , you will make your fitness back up no worries there , but you could risk turning it into something quite nasty if you don’t give your body chance to recover .
Jan 2018
4:52pm, 3 Jan 2018
21,027 posts
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LazyDaisy
Hello Alison, and welcome to Fetch. Firstly, I'm not a medic! There have been some stonking bugs around recently and I think it would be best to recover fully (or very nearly fully) before hitting the gym or the road again. It's inevitable that you'll need a bit of time to get back to where you were, fitness-wise, but you're young and you'll get there pretty quickly. If you keep slogging on when you're not well, you are more likely to delay that point.

Get well soon!
Jan 2018
5:24pm, 3 Jan 2018
2,231 posts
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Surrey Phil
I agree with philbo. If it's a head cold for example a light run should suffice but not if it's chesty. Don't be afraid to miss a week or two if you are under the weather. You will soon regain your level of fitness upon your return.
Jan 2018
5:26pm, 3 Jan 2018
32,665 posts
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McGoohan
Hi Alison - a couple of years or so ago, I got a chest infection that wouldn't shift - in fact I got similar two years on the trot, both at around the same time (February). Below the neck so I didn't gym it/run. However, once I'd had a month or so of boredom I did start going out and walking, steady at first and then more briskly.

Again I'm no medic, but would a (short) walk or two help?
Jan 2018
5:53pm, 3 Jan 2018
2 posts
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Alison K
Thanks for the advice everyone! I've had a head cold/sore ears (rowing machine was a big mistake :S) and a chesty cough too (mixed with asthma and the cold weather it's not ideal running wise) I'll maybe try and rest as much as possible this week and, depending on how I'm feeling, try for a short run on Monday after work.

My friend and I are looking at doing a half marathon (my first) around March/April time so definitely don't want to be setting myself back anymore than I already have.
Jan 2018
8:01pm, 3 Jan 2018
2,114 posts
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FergusG
Rule #1 - Get to the start line healthy and uninjured! If you keep that in mind, rest and recovery is the right choice.

Any thoughts on which Half Marathon you’ll go for? Stirling and Alloa would fit your March - April plans, but not sure which end of Scotland you’re at. I do remember psyching myself up to sign up for my first Half Marathon, and then being gutted that Alloa had filled up the day before I tried to get a place!
Jan 2018
8:34pm, 3 Jan 2018
3 posts
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Alison K
We were thinking about the Inverness half, also had a look at the Alloa too. Don't want anything too hilly for my first one though so will probably have to factor that in before deciding/signing up to anything.
Jan 2018
11:36pm, 3 Jan 2018
15,100 posts
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Dvorak
I've had a bug like McGoohan's a few times, usually lasting about three weeks. I found, through stubborn idiocy, that trying to run, or anything which exerted my gloopy lungs enough to start me coughing, was a rubbish idea, but walking for fresh air was ok (if it wasn't to cold). I think I found swimming less bad as well.

If it has gone on a few weeks, it might be time to see the doctor, in case it is not just what everyone else has (although this year's bug does seem to be affecting people longer). I think Alloa may come round a bit soon for you, sorry.

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