Exercise and Illness / Weight Update

If you are a long time reader of this blog (or went back and read the old posts), you may remember that I was training for the Flying Pig Half Marathon in 2009. The first two months of training went surprisingly well and I posted about looking forward to walking 8.5 miles. But, that turned out to be a mistake. Here’s why.

That very cold and snowy Saturday morning, I had the beginnings of a chest cold. Because I was so set on doing this walk, I didn’t bother to check to see if that was a good idea. I thought I should just suck it up and do it. I figured the adrenaline would get me through and it did to a point. The problem was that I drove that cold even deeper in my chest. It totally wiped me out for three weeks or more and that was even after I got some prescription meds to combat it. And that was pretty much the end of my half marathon training.

So the rule of thumb on exercising when sick is this. If your cold or whatever is affecting you from the neck up, you are okay to exercise. It may even help loosen up your congestion. But, if your illness is from the neck down, don’t exercise. It only makes you feel worse and can, like with me in 2009, makes things worse for your illness too.

I bring this up because I got that cough that’s going around the Cincinnati area lately. At first, I just thought it was a cold and used some over the counter medicine to treat the symptoms. But, about a week into it, the cough got worse and I would go off on coughing jags that wracked my whole body for as much as five minutes at a time. The last time I had that sort of cough, it was allergies so I switched to allergy medication. That helped some, but I still couldn’t sleep at night without the need to cough violently waking me up. After two weeks, it was time to see the doctor. Two prescriptions later and orders to rest all weekend later, I’m finally recuperating.

Through all this, I talked with Lori, my trainer at the Y, and she confirmed the “neck up / neck down” rule. As I’ve been recuperating, I’ve slowly been getting back to the pool at the Y, but I’m taking it easy. I definitely don’t want to have a repeat of 2009.

On the plus side, being under the weather and pushing lots of liquids has helped with my weight loss efforts. Though the Twitter widget on the right hand side seems to be having troubles again, I can say that I’ve lost another two pounds so I’m down 23.4 pounds since mid-July.

Best part? I’m wearing my wedding rings for the first time in months (if not longer). That is a truly wonderful thing!

–Carla