I am often amazed that such a small thing can have such a devastating effect on the human body, something so small that it can’t be seen with the naked eye, it requires a microscope to see it, I am referring to the cold and flu virus. No matter how big and strong you are it can lay you out like a fallen log.
For the last two days, yesterday being the worse, I was laid up in bed with the flu, for me exercising was not an option, I was so weak I stayed in bed all day, venturing out for twenty minutes to get some over the counter medication and a few groceries. Normally I am energetic and spry yesterday I was doing the old man shuffle, my stride was cut to half its normal length and my feet were closer to the ground when I lifted them than they normally are, my fear was that a good gust of wind would blow me over.
This brings me to the issue of, should you exercise when sick. On this issue there are three camps, one camp says yes, one camp says no, and the third camp says yes under certain conditions. I will present all there camp points of view in the following two articles and video.
Clearly his position has some merit to it, however, your doctor should be the final decision when it comes to your health, I know, some of us hear what the doctor says and go out and do what we want to do.
Should You Exercise When Sick?
My opinion on this is that being sick is the body’s way of telling you things are out of sort and its time to slow down and assess your situation. I could be that the illness, in my case the flu, could have been brought on by too much stress in your life. The immune system is stimulated by stress; however, too much stress and you begin to get sick. With not enough rest, the immune system becomes compromised making us susceptible to illnesses such as the flu and colds.
In my case, I didn’t follow my routine of getting extra rest last weekend so the flu virus that was floating around in my environment seen to latch onto me. Should you exercise when sick? I would say, if you go to the gym, no, you can spread your germs around if you are in the infectious stage Since few of us know when that stage has passed then we should do our best in preventing it being transmitted to others.
If you exercise at home, if you can manage it light exercise maybe ok, provided your doctor thinks it’s ok, if you can manage it. For me exercise was not an option, I was too weak and lacking in energy.
Clearly, there is no clear cut answer to this question, because the nature of the illness determines is you should exercise, example, if you had major surgery exercising, could make your illness worse, if you are too weak to exercise no, in the end should you exercise when sick, depends on you and your doctor.