“Should I go to the gym and sweat the sickness out?”

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“Should I go to the gym and sweat the sickness out?”

As the wind starts to pick up and cool down, leaves on the trees start to change colors and fall we spend more time indoors with the heater turned high and the windows closed. When the seasons change and we are confined to the indoors we unfortunately start running a higher risk of getting sick. Whether we simply have the sniffles or are trying to fight the plague, being sick is no fun for anyone. Therefore, we must take the right precautions if we know we are sick or be more pro-active to prevent an illness from happening or reduce the days of suffering.

In my last blog I talked about the benefits of Vitamin C and how it boosts the immune system to enable it to better fight illness. Undoubtedly the best form of Vitamin C is found in food, but during the MN winter it may be harder to find good food sources. So understandably if one needs to supplement it certainly is a way to ensure one is getting the the vitamins necessary to help reduce the number of days one is sick.

Other ways to prevent illness is to make sure one is getting enough recovery. Whether we are working long days at the office or spending all of our free time in the gym, we need to make sure we are allowing our bodies to heal. Recovery includes not only sleeping but maybe a massage, meditation, mobility, extra stretching, visiting a chiropractor for an adjustment or more water intake. Anything that is helping the body to repair itself rather than wear it down can be considered recovery.

Everyone at some point or another gets sick. The important thing to remember is you have control over the amount of days you are sick for. One of the best ways to reduce the number of days you are sick for is rest. When your immune system is compromised, it needs you to stop adding more stress on the body to better fight off any illness. Therefore, you need to take the time off from work and/or especially from the gym to recover.

Taking time off to rest and recover is not only important for the person who is sick but also for the people that they come in contact on a daily basis. Please do everyone around you a favor and stay home and rest, hopefully preventing the illness from spreading. This is not only important for your place of work, but especially at the gym.

Often this time of year I get the famous question of, “What kind of workout should I do when I am sick?” My guess is that reading this just made you giggle out loud a little bit because you know how silly it sounds. Well, there is your answer. You should not be working out if you are sick. Everyone knows that they need fluids and rest but sometimes it takes someone else to tell them in order to feel less guilty about taking the rest. There is no such thing as,…”going to the gym and sweating the sickness out…”. Oh, but don’t you worry, there will always be another Crossfit workout, there will always be more weight to lift, more meters to row and more WOD’s to do.


1 Response
  1. Mark Michalski

    I tried “sweating out” a sickness before when I was a youngster and ended up with walking pneumonia. I basically extended my illness by trying to sweat it out. I don’t recommend it!