November 28, 2012 by toheaveninahooptie
This post is a bit out of order since it’s about the day before we left for Texas for Thanksgiving, but ain’t nobody said yuh can’t go outer order. Anyway, back to business: it is the Wednesday of Thanksgiving break and you’re Hannah, waking up planning to get a run in because you know a) you’ll soon be trapped in a car for 5 hours and b) running out of town may not happen. But, oh no!, that pesky little scratch in your throat and congestion in your nose has become a real cold with a cough, stuffed nose, and itchy eyes! What to do, what to do?
I didn’t feel achy, but I had seen this cold coming and ignored the symptoms up to this point (staying out until 3:30 Monday night probably didn’t help my case any). It was to the point where it was hard to ignore and I was breathing out of my mouth like a psychopath because my nose was of no use. So, I had to decide whether a run would be a good idea or not. My pros and cons were as follows:
Pros: -I would get out of the house for a little and stave off packing that much longer, – I could learn to better know my body and what I can and can’t handle “sick”, -I needed to run because I just needed to go, -being cooped up in a car on long drives always drives me crazy because I can’t stand staying still that long
Cons: -If I was significantly sick, I would hurt my body and possibly prolong my illness, -I fear bad runs like the plague (I’m trying to get better about this), so I didn’t want to go out there and feel like crap for 4 miles, -I didn’t want to waste my effort if I wouldn’t be able to run well enough for a decent workout
So, of course I turned to google and found this article, among many, and made my decision from that. The general consensus was to follow the “shoulder rule”; if your illness is above the shoulders (runny nose, itchy eyes, sore throat), you’re good to run. If the illness is anywhere that isn’t above the shoulders; especially a cough (respiratory system is under stress already) or fever (heart is under added stress due to higher temperature blood), take a rest day. Although I had a little cough, I decided to gopher it anyway.
The weather was (clearly) perfection at around 50 degrees and sunny, so I’m really glad that I went! I felt a little off in the beginning, but I soon warmed up and couldn’t even remember that I had been sick. I went about 3.5 miles in around 30 minutes and felt good for treating my body with a little recovery but still getting in my beloved run. I feel like I actually ran my cold out and felt just dandy for the rest of the day. The cold was by no means over, and the next morning when I woke up and sounded like a fog horn I knew that running couldn’t happen every day of the vacation, but this first little run was well worth it.
After the run, I came home, showered, and whipped up a quick lunch. Hummus spread on a [whole wheat] tortilla with spinach, carrot sliver-y things, cherry tomatoes, and a delicious dressing drizzle (Cardini’s light Cesar dressing to be exact).
And if you’re lucky enough….
So, that’s that.
Do you run when you’re sick? How do you know when to draw the line?