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Seven Must-Haves for Working Out with a Cold

If you’re anything like me you know a cold’s around the corner. My first thought’s always sweat it  out!

I’ve found that light exercise can boost the body’s metabolism and promote a stronger immune response to the common cold, even prompting the body to release chemicals to help repair itself. This can be helpful in fighting infections. However, it is important to note that intense exercise can have the opposite effect and you should always listen to your body. Sometimes during intense workouts, our body releases steroids to fight stress. These steroids can decrease our bodies’ ability to fight off infections efficiently, ultimately lowering our immune system.

With that said, I definitely encourage light, moderate movement in the early stages of what you believe to be a cold coming o n. Avoid anything intense like high-intensity interval training, weight training and endurance workouts like marathons. I’ve listed seven must-haves for working out with a cold that will help you feel your best and get back on track:

Yoga: Restorative yoga poses are helpful in warding off the flu and colds, as well as managing the symptoms should you fall prey. You’ll not only reap the protective benefits of each pose, but you’ll also reduce stress, which will help keep you healthy all flu season long. Some restorative yoga poses you should try: child’s pose, corpse pose, legs up against the wall (lower back supported by a small pillow), seated twist, and downward dog.

Meditation: Training in mindfulness meditation may protect you against the common cold. Many would second-guess the power and influence of meditation, however I personally have experienced the effects of mindfulness and having intention behind what I am trying to achieve. Since meditation lowers stress levels and boosts your inner intuition, it can help your physical body get healthy.

Use the right tissues: I always keep Kleenex tissues around my house and gym. I especially love these Kleenex Soothing Lotion Tissues because they contain aloe and Vitamin E, which always soothes and relieves my nose. I don’t ever get distracted by a runny nose and that extra comfort is my best tip for staying on track! Try them out here.

Hydration: A properly hydrated body is key in fighting infection. Water, fresh juice, clear broth or warm lemon water with honey helps loosen congestion, and prevents dehydration. Avoid things like alcohol, coffee and caffeinated sodas, which can make dehydration worse. Explore taking in warm liquids, su ch as chicken soup, tea or warm apple juice. Warm fluids like these are said to help ease congestion by increasing mucus flow.

Immune boosting diet: Consider food as medicine! Feeding your body certain foods may help keep your immune system strong. If you’re looking for way s to prevent colds that come with this time of year, your first step should be a visit to your local grocery store. Try cooking with superfoods like garlic, ginger, citrus fruits, red bell peppers, broccoli, spinach, turmeric and green tea.

Light jogging or body-weighted workouts: Some light jogging or low-impact body weighted workouts at the start of a cold is a good idea, since it can open up your airways. You’ll also get that rush of endorphins when the body is moving, helping you feel your best.

Rest: Your body needs to heal. Getting adequate rest, in the forms of quality sleep or simply putting your feet up are highly recommended. Avoid maintaining your usual busy schedule as best you can.

Be sure to rest your body and mind this sniffle season! And take care of yourself responsibly, being mindful and aware of your body and what it needs to stay on track.

This post is sponsored by Kleenex® Brand. All opinions expressed are my own.

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