When you’re sick, take some time to recuperate
Being active, taking time for proper rest, and maintaining good nutrition may not be the total answer to fighting off those summer flu bugs. The illnesses I have seen this year are long-lasting and much more severe than the ones that have circulated through my classroom in the past. They stay for longer periods and require recuperation time that doesn’t tolerate exercise.
Chest congestion, throat viruses, sinus and long-term vomiting have hit a lot of sports groups. Usually fitness types are quite healthy, and they run with other healthy individuals that seem to bypass illness. But not this late spring.
Now I see two weeks of discomfort that is so debilitating that gaining lost strength doesn’t begin for months. For anyone who is a hard-core fitness student, it can be extremely discouraging. Trying to regain lost muscle is bad enough, but if you have suffered from a chest infection, the rebuilding of the respiratory system can increase your recuperation time.
Use caution. Don’t try to work through a fever or any new aches in your muscles or joints. A good point to remember: When your body feels a little off, it probably is. And it can sure get a lot worse if you exercise. You will considerably lengthen your recuperation time and perhaps spend a lot more time and money in your doctor’s office.
It would be nice if the people in charge of fitness could require a doctor’s permit to re-enter exercise or sports, but we have to rely on the student’s judgment. Peer pressure governs a lot of our decisions, and logic sometimes doesn’t matter.
If you still ache, have a sore throat, sweat excessively, have a fever, or have trouble breathing deeply, then don’t exercise.
If it is within your power to get a flu shot even at this late date, consider it. This new type of flu is bad stuff, and the people I deal with who have been ill say it is the worst type of flu they have suffered. If you do get sick, get medical help so you can get over it quickly and get on with your fitness life.
The other point I think is more important is that if you have any disability involving the cardiovascular or pulmonary system, don’t wait to seek medical help, especially if you suffer from any type of heart or lung disorder.
n Jerry Vance is owner of The Sweat Shop/Wet Sweat. She offers classes through Carson City Recreation and Aquatics Center and is a fitness instructor for the Senior Center.