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Cycling while sick

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Cycling while sick

Old 10-14-05, 12:23 PM
  #1  
Gogocld
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I've recently developed a cold that started with an itchy scratchy throat and now has made its way down into my lungs. I'm feeling a little sore and achy but when I sit around idle I just feel worse. I've decided to cut back my rides and take it a little easier on my 10 mile ride to work. I have been warned all my life by doctors to take it easy and get lots of rest when I feel like I'm getting a cold. Funny thing though, I feel best when I'm on the bike. Seems to help clear the lungs and give me that adrenaline boost. I know the pro's ride when they are sick, think Basso at the Giro this last year, but I'm not getting paid to do this.

So my discussion topic is; How does the common cold affect your cycling? Better to stop completely or continue but at a less than normal rate to allow your body to heal?

Last edited by Gogocld; 10-14-05 at 01:15 PM.
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Old 10-14-05, 12:26 PM
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i ride unless there's a fever involved... then it's time to sack out.
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Old 10-14-05, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Gogocld
So my discussion topic is; How does the common cold affect your cycling? Better to stop completely or continue but at a less than normal rate to allow your body to heal?
I bought my bike a few months ago and then started to ride a lot. Started riding to work 14 miles each way. Second week into it...I developed a scratchy throat. I remember breathing some exhaust that morning dicing it up with the cars. I continued to ride all that week, all the while feeling the tickle down in my bronchial tubes. Went on a 40 miler, 20 miler and was planning a 60 miler on Labor Day. Fortunately my body decided to take me down a few pegs before I could get out on the 60. I ended up getting severe acute bronchitis and have been off the bike since up until last Saturday when I went for a 20 miler. Felt like I was dragging an anchor. All total I was hacking up a lung for over 5 weeks. No way I could ride. I'd say if you feel it coming on, get off the bike and give your body the slack it needs to kick out whatever is ailing it. I was stupid, I'm sure others are too. I remember feeling it kept moving further down into my left lung. I've never coughed so much.
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Old 10-14-05, 01:48 PM
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When I have a cold I love getting on the bike. I dunno, feels like I'm sweating it out or something. I'm sure I wind up going not as far or as fast, though.

Fevers I can't do 'cause I just feel like I'm going to pass out.
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Old 10-14-05, 02:27 PM
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If it's in your lungs, stop. If it's in your head, you can ride, but take it easy.
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Old 10-14-05, 02:53 PM
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if you have to call in sick to work/school, you probably shouldn't ride. thats my rule anyways...if only because i don't want a co-worker to see me out on my bike when i should be at work.

i too have been sick with a HORRIBLE head cold this week...missed the last 3 days of work(including today)...i'd honestly rather be at work right now and be healthy than be at home and sick.
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Old 10-14-05, 02:59 PM
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Crap-it. I've been slowly feeling something in my nose and throat today. This is exactly what I was wondering myself.
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Old 10-14-05, 03:08 PM
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There are no rules on exercising while ill. Take each illness on a case by case basis. Riding is work so if you are feeling lousy you have to be confident that you can hack the planned ride. It is best to play it safe and stay at home if you think you might possibly faint, collapse, go into respiratory failure, etc. With mild upper respiratory infections, I ride lightly. With anything worse, I avoid trouble and take a rest.
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Old 10-14-05, 09:37 PM
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I like to ride extremely easy when I'm sick. I'll ride super easy, even for just 20 minutes. I find that it makes me feel much better.
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Old 10-14-05, 11:57 PM
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There's some little bug going around, my neighbor calls it kennel cough lol.

It's really minor but I have it and it's making me feel very tired., guess that means I should rest so I am. Or I'm a lazy slug but at least the rest should help me get over it.
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Old 10-15-05, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by puddin' legs
If it's in your lungs, stop. If it's in your head, you can ride, but take it easy.
Has always worked for me also. I'll add that if a building fever is involved, I stay off the bike. Also, som 'head colds' seem to involve the inner ear fluid and seem to affect balance. I've actually been 'fighting' some lowgrade thing since last Friday, and Monday and Wednesday I've felt some inner ear/balance issues. Stayed off those days. Did a real easy 20 yesterday and a moderate tempo 30 today, feeling abit better, but still not 'over' it.
A liberal application of Belgian Dark Chocolate also seems to help
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Old 10-15-05, 03:00 AM
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I put on an extra layer and sweat it out.. I feel so much better after riding.. Make sure to keep well hydrated, I seem to sweat so much more when I am not feeling well..
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Old 10-15-05, 05:01 AM
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Rode when I got the cold/scratchy throat a couple of weeks ago. I was fine other than the constant flow of snot.
Weird thing happened. Someone at work gave me EmergenC. I tried it and my cold was literally gone the next day. Not sure if I was 'cured' or if the cold was on the wane anyway. Worth checking out.
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Old 10-15-05, 05:13 AM
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The times I've ridden, I've wound up developing something much worse. I admit that I didn't ride easy. Now, when I feel sick I take a few days off.
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Old 10-15-05, 06:09 AM
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it's a few years now that cycling is deep into my system and any abstinence longer than 3 days has a minor psychological impact! So this dilemma strikes repeatedly each winter much more often lately that i have my little kids around (virus bombs!).Whenever i don't have fever and feel ok more or less, i take a medium effort ride shielding my body against a cold wind.It's also essential to be fully hydrated before getting on. Yes, i feel much better afterwards and i can feel that the bronchial tubes have discharged the mucus. And the moral is uplifted which is a cure on its own. However if you feel a wreck and sore from head to toes take a few days off, don't ignore any message!
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Old 10-15-05, 06:33 AM
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I have found that riding while sick does make you feel better afterwards but the effort will lower your resistance and can cause whatever is going on to last longer. If your heart rate becomes elevated, while riding, above what you normally experience, it's time to stop for a few days.
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Old 10-15-05, 06:35 AM
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Unless bed ridden, I have often cycled while sick..When sun is out and warm , felt it even made me feel better.
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Old 10-15-05, 07:19 AM
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Bicycling will actually help you feel better, but it's most crucial what you do after your ride. You want to be going home after your ride. Riding speeds up your metabolism and regenerates your bodys healing process. After you ride sick, go home drink something good for you, take a hot shower and stay warm, eat healthy food and relax. Accellerating your metabolism will quicken your bodys healing process. This formula will only pertain to a person who is normally above average health. You can speed up the healing process. It's the rest that you get after your ride and what you ingest into your body that's going to make the difference.
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Old 10-15-05, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by 60cycle
i ride unless there's a fever involved... then it's time to sack out.

+1 on this advice. I am still riding with a little bit of a cold/swollen throat and doing some hard rides but generally taking thing a bit easier for intensity but not really distance. I to have found that I feel the best when ridding most of the time.
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