Is Exercising While Sick Bad?

exercising while sick

So, I’m sick. I’ve been sick for two or three days now. I hardly EVER get sick, which I attribute to the vitamins and nutrients I get in shakeology, but after my stepson sneezed all over our house, the germs crept in.

My Symptoms: swollen glands, the inside of my nose feels like its on fire, medicine head without taking medicine and I sneeze only while in awkward public situations. And its loud.

As most of you know, I started Asylum 2, a 30 day intensive sports training DVD program by Shaun T, last week and thought I would address the common question as to whether you should be exercising while sick.

Exercising While Sick: Yay or Nay?

I know some of you are flat out saying NAY! No way! No how! Bring me my blankie and some theraflu and the TV remote. Done and done. Some of you are looking for any teeny tiny sign of sickness just to get out of your workouts! Ha! I know your kind. Ideally you would prefer a small bell bedside, as well, right? Well, no longer! Here’s the official guidelines:

It’s texercising while sickhe NECK CHECK.

If your symptoms are from the neck up, lace up your shoes and get your workout in!

If your symptoms are below the neck, then rest up.

It’s that simple. If you are like me and are suffering from nose, throat, sinus headache garbage, then a workout might do some good! Sweat it out! It might not be your most effective workout ever, but getting your heart rate up and your blood flowing could actually speed up recovery! But, if you are feverish, achy, have chest congestions, stomach issues, diarrhea, flu like symptoms, etc, then its best to rest and get back to your workouts when you are feeling better. You have to conserve your energy to allow your body to fight the illness and improve quickly.

What about the Workout Calendar?

For those of you working out at home to a Beachbody program, you know that we have a calendar that we should be following telling us which workouts to do on what days. So, when you get sick, this can definitely screw things up. If you aren’t able to continue exercising while sick then should you skip the days you missed on the calendar or go back and do them or, say you are out for awhile, should you just start over? I get asked this a lot. Here is my personal advice. If you are just out for a day or two, then make the calendar work for you. Move your rest day or a stretch day to the sick day. That way you don’t miss a beat. If you miss 3-4 days, then just start that week over once you are better. If you missed 2-3 weeks, then I would start that month over as most Beachbody programs are progressive and build upon your strength. I do not recommend missing days and doing doubles to get back on track unless they were super light days. If you do 2 workouts in one day, you end up compromising. You can compromise form and injure yourself. Or you can compromise intensity and thereby make the two workouts counterproductive. I recommend just to get back on track as I’ve recommended and, as always, focus and give each workout all you’ve got! On that note, I’m going to go blow my nose and push play as I am officially approved to be exercising while sick! 🙂


Digging Deeper,
Jessica Bowser Nelson
exercising while sick



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