For some people, exercise itself is an uncomfortable activity, with all the sweating, huffing and puffing, and challenge that comes with elevating your heart rate for an extended period of time. But for people with seasonal allergies, the discomforts of exercise reaches a whole new level.
Your eyes are itchy and watery, your nose is stuffed up or runny, and breathing can become difficult. But that doesn’t mean you should give up on your plans to make regular exercise a part of your healthy lifestyle. In general, people with allergies can and should exercise (as long as their doctor says it’s okay). The following tips will help you make the most of your workouts and keep your allergy symptoms at bay.
- Always talk to your doctor before starting an exercise program.
- If you are a beginner, exercise indoors for a few weeks before you move your workout sessions outside. This will help you build up your fitness level without worrying about allergy symptoms on top of the other challenges of starting an exercise program.
- Don’t forget to take your allergy medication on a regular basis to remain protected.
- If you receive allergy shots, do not exercise strenuously for at least one or two hours after your injection. Vigorous exercise, which increases heart rate and blood flow, can lead to a rapid absorption of the shot, increasing your chances of serious side effects.
- Watch the weather. Changes in weather (temperature, wind, humidity and precipitation) all affect pollen counts. Warm, dry, and breezy days—especially in the morning—tend to increase pollen counts (avoid outdoor exercise during these conditions), while rainy, cooler days and evenings will reduce pollen concentration.
- If you’re feeling under the weather, avoid outdoor exercise. Your immune system is more likely to react severely to allergens when you’re tired, sick, or overly stressed.
- Spend at least five minutes warming up before you start each workout.
Exercise is an important component of a healthy lifestyle. While allergies may be a nuisance, there are lots of options for working your workouts around your symptoms. In fact, a good workout may even help reduce your allergy symptoms. Your body produces extra adrenalin during exercise, which benefits the body by lowering your allergic response (temporarily). This means that exposure to outdoor allergens while you are working out might not result in a reaction.
Health and happiness.