Should You Exercise When You're Sick?

I try to workout every weekday. I skip some days when I lack sleep but not when I have nasal congestion or even a sore throat. For some reason, I feel that sweating it out relieves me, at least temporarily, of the stuffy nose and helps ease the sore throat. I was not sure if I was doing justice to my health by continually being active when sick so I googled to check what is medically recommended. And this is what WebMD has to say:

"A neck check is a way to determine your level of activity during a respiratory illness," adds Neil Schachter, MD, medical director of respiratory care at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York. "If your symptoms are above the neck, including a sore throat, nasal congestion, sneezing, and tearing eyes, then it's OK to exercise," he says. "If your symptoms are below the neck, such as coughing, body aches, fever, and fatigue, then it's time to hang up the running shoes until these symptoms subside."
So the next time you are wondering whether you should continue to workout while sick, do the neck check. Symptoms above the neck should be fine. If symptoms are below the neck, skip it. When it comes to fever, you need to skip it.  With a fever, the heat is all over your body, hence if is categorized as above AND below the neck. Of course, at the end of the day you need to listen to your body. Even if all your symptoms are above the neck but you feel really tired and unwell, then it won't hurt to just relax and take a day or two off from your regular workout.

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