Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Training sick

I went to see my doctor today after fighting a nasal infection for the last 6 weeks. While we were in Seattle it went from nasal to throat and I finally gave up and am now on a 2 week round of Amoxicillin and corticosteroid nasal spray, the culture came back bacterial. I asked my doc if I could still 'exercise' and he said that would be fine.

In the past I was pretty much chronically overtrained so my immune system was almost always compromised. I've raced and trained with bronchitis on two occasions (one time I raced an Ironman in Japan at the very tail end of bronchitis with gurgling lungs), the flu, food poisoning, colds, a staph infection and ear infection (pools are filthy stews of body fluids). Something that has always been a rule (I didn't say I followed the rules) is that you train with a lower than normal effort so you don't stress your immune system, but exercise is still very good. Bundling up in multiple layers when training or using a dry sauna elevates your core temperature (as in a forced fever) and sends a message to the immune system to increase the white blood cell count. Extra hydration of course. And something that also works for me is to fast. It's been shown that fasting stimulates the body's immune system and stimulates beneficial anti-stress responses. I usually lose my appetite anyway which I take as a primal instinct (ever see a sick animal scarfing down food?), and I listen. The chicken soup thing has everything to do with electrolytes and hydration. Gatorade was all I took in today. 4 liters of it. Anyway... I digest. (and simply to explain my misuse of the word digress for future and past posts... that is a quote from Peter Griffin)

So tomorrow is either a 13 mile run up part of my Mt Evans II course or a long bike. I have a 53 mile mountain bike route that I am excited to ride. The original plan was to do both but I'm not sure yet. My doctor did say I could still exercise.


Dave said...

Lower than normal training effort....Mount Evans training course. Considering the second would only work for me if the first normally contained projectile vomiting every mile, I will add this to the fact pattern for the case of why you are a superhero.

Kick the virus' ass, and be careful out there!*

*Be careful applies to not letting your superhero identity be revealed.

Footfeathers said...

Doc probably thinks you walk 2 miles a day on the treadmill.

Taking it easy for a few days and getting healthy is likely more beneficial than butting heads with illness by training so hard. You have more to lose now than just a few seconds in a race.

Anonymous said...

thoughts on this:

Anonymous said...

staff infection! those are brutal.

Lucho said...

D- ya, I got lucky and took a week down on antibiotics and it responded well. I caught it early which helped.