When You're Under the Weather
Working out when you're feeling sick can be a drag, but illness doesn't have to derail your routine. If your symptoms appear above your neck (runny nose, sneezing, sore throat), you can keep working out if you take your intensity down a few notches. If your symptoms appear below the neck (a deep chest cough, vomiting, diarrhea), or if you have a fever, it's best to lay off altogether until you feel better.
If you're well enough to exercise, the key is to keep some momentum going without overdoing it. However, sometimes when you're not feeling well, the last thing you want to do is exercise and eat well. If you do fall off the wagon, don't give up once you're feeling better. Here's what one of my rock stars posted recently on the Message Boards about feeling sick, falling off the wagon with her eating habits and exercise, but then how she's rebounding:
" I got really sick while I was in Santa Fe — terrible headaches and nausea, which I believe were caused by the high altitude. I could not exercise while I was there (could barely stand upright!) and decided to comfort myself with food (the whole, if I can't exercise then might as well be 'off' plan mentality!) Well, once I had the taste of food food, I couldn't stop — I had so much ice cream this week it was insane! (and delicious!) I basically ate anything I wanted for a week. You would think that it would be really satisfying, but it wasn't. I forgot how much energy, self-loathing, and guilt goes into eating that much — it is more work than exercising and eating right! Giving in to every craving, finding the right foods, eating, sneeking, feeling guilty, the lethargy, unhappiness, yuck — I can't believe I used to live like that.
BUT, I'm back!!! I'm sure the scale is up a few pounds, but I know what I have to do to shake it off. I went for my first run in a week yesterday and suffered through five miles in the heat, had a decent day of eating and am generally moving in the right direction. I am going back out of town on Monday for business and I need to be better prepared this time to not let the change in environment and routine throw me off track." —I.am.worth.it
Good job — this journey is all about getting healthier. Sometimes life will throw you a curveball, and you've just got to do your best, don't give up, and get back up to speed as soon as you can.