By Dr. Morrison with Stephanie Kurz and Debra Kaplan
As the holiday season approaches, many of us look forward to enjoying some of our favorite seasonal meals and treats. Indeed, it’s a time for gathering and celebration – dinners with family and friends, the annual office party – and all that revelry often comes with a sugar splurge.
But, as many of you well know, the holidays are also often accompanied by an imminent array of colds, coughs, and flu. And when you wake up with congestion, muscle and joint aches, or other “seasonal” symptoms, you may ask yourself — is it best to hit the gym, or stay home and rest? The answer depends on your symptoms and your mental and physical energy levels. The only way to make the right call is to listen to your body.
When to skip the gym
· Any flu-like symptoms such as fever, muscle and joint pain, nausea, vomiting
· Acute gastrointestinal issues, including severe diarrhea
· Extreme fatigue, feeling too tired to exercise or even get out of bed
· Excessive coughing, sneezing, or runny nose that may indicate your illness is contagious
When to try working out
· Once you are past the acute, contagious phase of your seasonal illness, slowly working up to a comfortable, sustainable exercise routine can support overall health and healing. Check with your doctor to get the green light on exercise!
· Mild-to-moderate, post-party hangovers may benefit from stretching and twisting to help “wring out” toxins from the body; working up a cardio sweat by walking or light jogging can also help our bodies detoxify – but see our note below about hydration!
· If, despite mild symptoms like slight congestion, a sore throat, or feeling tired, you still feel motivated to exercise
If you do hit the gym while under the weather, try these exercises and tips:
· Walking on treadmill, elliptical, or stationary bike
· Low-intensity yoga or stretching class
· Take a break from sprinting on the treadmill or your Power Vinyasa class
· Remember to drink plenty of water! Adequate hydration is crucial to health and healing
· Get plenty of rest so that your body can replenish and maintain good energy levels. At least 7.5 hours per night.
Try these options to prevent colds and flu:
· Echinacea by MediHerb: 1 daily works as an immune balancer
· Buffered Vitamin C: 1000mg daily can improve immune function
· Immune Benefit: 2 droppers-full every 2 hours as a mushroom extract to beat colds
Continuously pay attention to how you feel, and honor what your body tries to tell you!
Stephanie Kurz and Debra Kaplan are certified health coaches working at The Morrison Center, in NYC, where they partner with clients to optimize their energy, vitality and physical well-being with the use of diet modification, and a balanced, natural approach.
Dr. Jeffrey Morrison is a medical doctor, the author of Cleanse Your Body, Clear Your Mind, and founder of The Morrison Center, in NYC. He partners with patients to find the underlying cause of their symptoms and provide a thorough, individualized treatment and nutritionally-based program to achieve optimal health result.
Learn more about Dr. Morrison and The Morrison Center.