Wednesday, December 01, 2010
All the experts agree (or, to put it another way, I read this somewhere on the Internet) that it's OK to go running when you have a cold as long as the cold is above the neck. Symptoms below the neck (chest cold, bronchial infection, body ache) require time off, while symptoms above the neck (runny nose, stuffiness, sneezing) don't pose a risk to runners continuing workouts. So they say.
Regular readers of this blog will know that up to now I have ignored this rule. Basically I have taken the first hint of a cold as an excuse to go into hibernation for two weeks, avoid all kinds of physical activity during that time, and to write self-pitying blog posts about the severity of my Man Cold.
But not this time. I have a whole new attitude to exercise, thanks to my reaction to my pathetic, dismal, wimpish performance at the Laser Masters Worlds this year. Consistency is my watch word. If I say I am going to go running three times a week, then I damn well am going to go running three times a week.
About 10 days ago I felt the first signs of an impending cold. Probably picked it up from one of my darling grandchildren. At any one time it seems that at least one of them has a runny nose, a sneeze or a cough.
So I checked the location of the symptoms in relation to my neck (above - OK) and went for a run.
A couple of days later the symptoms were worse. I definitely had a cold now. Check location of symptoms in relation to neck. Tick. Go for a run.
Over Thanksgiving the symptoms got worser and worser. But still not below neck. Tick. Went for a run on Sunday.
All the experts agree (or, to put it another way, I read this somewhere on the Internet) that even if running won't make your cold any worse, it won't make it any better either. But I feel better than I usually do when I have a cold. Why would that be? Is this some mild girly cold virus and not a fully fledged Man Cold Virus? Or do I feel better psychologically because I am still getting out in the fresh air for a run several times a week instead of sitting inside writing self-pitying blog posts about my Man Cold? Or is the cold waiting its time to show me its true awful Man Cold nature?
What about you? Do you still exercise when you have a cold? Do you think it is beneficial?