Jan 18, 2017
I get this question a lot, almost exclusively around this time of year. And I understand the logic behind each of your options. On the one hand, if you have some good gym momentum going, you don't want to take your foot off the gas. Or, if you're like me and love the training process, you just don't WANT to sit it out for a few days. Truth is, I used to think that if you could get out of bed, you should find a way to hit the gym.
Used to being the key phrase there.
Let's not keep you in suspense. The answer to "should you work out when you're sick?" is a massive, resounding
And here's why:
Skip the gym and devote whatever time/energy you've just freed up to proactively caring for yourself. Go to bed early, drink water like it's your job, and supplement with vitamin C and zinc (which you should be doing anyway). Ironically, this will help you kick the sick, quick, and you'll be back to full strength much sooner than if you drag it out by weakening yourself in the gym while trying to get well at the same time. Trust me.
I'm so passionate about this because I've been sick as a dog all weekend (including New Year's Eve!) and want to help as many of you as possible avoid this fate. Below is a photo of a soothing remedy I am sipping this very moment: echinacea tea, raw honey, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. I think I turned a corner today (been trying to sleep >10 hours a day for the past two days), so with a little luck I'll be back in the gym tomorrow. Fingers crossed.
Let me know if you have any questions about working out while sick, or about anything, really. I'll be doped up on NyQuil in a minute so my answers, while not technically correct, should at least be entertaining.
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