One of the best ways to reduce the risk of the common cold is by keeping up regular exercise during winter. But if you do catch a cold – should you continue exercising?
Research from the American College of Sports Medicine has shown that exercising with a cold doesn’t affect the severity or duration of cold symptoms.
If symptoms are ‘above the neck’, such as runny nose, mild sore throat or watery eyes, and you feel OK then moderate exercise is fine. Intense exercise is safe after a few days, once symptoms have subsided.
For symptoms that are ‘below the neck’, such as chest congestion, cough, fever, stomach upset or muscle aches and pains, you will need to take a break, as exercise can prolong the illness. More severe illness may require a 2 - 4 week break.
Look out for symptoms such as dizziness or feeling weak.
Keep dry and warm – don’t linger in damp clothing.
Don’t go too hard, too soon – start back gradually.
Don’t overdo it – rest up between workouts.
Remember if you have any concerns, speak to your instructor before you train