August 24, 2019

Should you exercise when you’re feeling ill?

Ordinarily, waking up feeling under the weather is a welcome excuse to not go for a run. But anyone following a strict training plan in the lead-up to a particularly strenuous milestone – say, a marathon – will understand the added stress that a cold or stomach upset can cause.

The mental mathematics involved in working out how far you might be falling behind if you fail to make it out for today’s four-miler plus the juggling of glycerin throat solutions, tissues and Night Nurse can make settling on the sofa and hunkering down to recover feel far less appealing than it usually would. Is it not possible to run through it in the hope the exercise will help clear it up? Only to a certain extent, says the personal trainer Niko Algieri, who is the co-founder of London fitness studio Equilibrium.

“There are levels,” explains Algieri. “If you just have a bit of nasal congestion, you could go for a light run with a very slight chance that the increased heart rate and breathing could clear your congestion – but if you’re going to do that then please take it slowly.”


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