View Full Version : HOW sick to ride?

03-16-2007, 12:34 PM
I am sure this has been asked before ....

this past week I have been sick -- viral sick -- nose, chest, head, aches. Nothing major but just overall "yuck" feel. Could be allergies ... same symptoms, and weather is changing and I am getting older which I understand makes me prone to getting seasonal allergies ....

anyway, did not ride on days I planned on riding because I felt "yucK", but someone told me I should have forced myself on bike because it would have stimulated my body and I would have actually felt better. So, is this true??:confused: :confused:

if it is seasonal allergies, I would hate to not be riding because of "yuck" feeling when all I need to do is push myself a little ... on the other hand, don't want to make it last longer than it has to ... oh, what to do? :eek:

03-16-2007, 12:42 PM
I think everyone is different. I've ridden when sick, but I have a pretty high tolerance for pain/discomfort. Riding and being outside usually makes me feel better, but that's just me. My one rule is that if I have a fever, I definitely won't ride.

If you don't think you'll enjoy the ride, you are probably better resting and not getting on the bike.

03-16-2007, 12:43 PM
My rule of thumb is:

above the neck: go out and play

below the neck: rest, drink lots of water, see doctor if condition continues.

Good luck!!

03-16-2007, 12:47 PM
If it's seasonal allergies, I recommend taking something like Claritin (a) to relieve your symptoms and (b) to rule out the possibility that it's something else. I have allergies, too, and I don't generally feel achy, so I have to wonder if you have something else.

I'm arguably a wimp, but I tend to lay off exercise when I'm sick. My immunity is already down and taxing my body further isn't likely to help. I've also read that exercising with a viral infection can actually harm your heart muscle. Since it's so hard to tell if an infection is viral or bacterial, I generally just don't take any chances. I'd rather just take the time off and come back strong. In fact, some of my strongest rides have been after a week of being laid up. It proves the point, in my mind, that rest is sometimes not only the best thing for your body, but also for your performance.

Listen to your body. If you think you need rest, then go ahead and rest. If you think getting up and moving around will help, then do so, but take it really easy.

I hope you feel better soon.

03-16-2007, 03:29 PM
The above the neck rule is a good one to follow, but allergies can and do make you feel weak and sick.
I am the queen of riding when I shouldn't and it has caused more trouble than it's worth. Bronchitis, pneumonia, etc. My immune system is not that great and my advice would be to listen to your body and take a day or two of rest.
I wish I had done that six weeks ago.

03-16-2007, 03:44 PM
Listen to your body it knows what it can handle.

I've been in bed most of the week with the flu (glad I got my flu shot back in November). I originally thought it was my allergies kicking in Monday afternoon, lots of sneezing, runny nose that is until the cough came on Tuesday and the fever appeared that afternoon. I had planned on riding Tuesday after school. It was going to be 80 and sunny a perfect day to be out on my bike. However, by the time the end of the day rolled around I knew I did not have the energy to ride so I took myself home and climbed into bed. I returned to school late Tuesday evening to write out sub plans, crawled back in bed and basically stayed there until today (I only emerged from my cocoon of blankets to tend to my furry friends and to go to school to write lesson plans). It really bothered me that I missed a couiple of great days to ride but in reality I knew I was just to weak and it would simply be too much for my tired body. Of course now that I'm feeling more like a human again it has turned really cold and though I want to ride I'm not sure riding in the cold air is going to benefit me in any way. I have been telling myself all day not to fret for there is still many, many ideal riding days ahead of me and missing a couple will not kill me.

I hope you get to feeling better soon.

03-16-2007, 03:52 PM
lessons learned the hard way.....

when in doubt rest..an extra day off will not kill you..trust me.....

feel better..

BTW, just for the record, all of our allergies have kicked in this week.

03-16-2007, 06:22 PM
Im in the same spot as you makbike, but all my symptoms are, well let's say, below the neck, except when my stomach wants to do a reversal on the laws of physics:( and with fever and body aches. I've been on bed rest for the past 4 days and today I finally feel ok, but, knowing that my immune system has been fighting off something vicious, I didn't ride. Depending on how I feel, I might take an easy ride(going pretty slow and not straying far from home) Sat and Sun, but that only depends on my body.
The best advice I can give, is exactly what most have said already: just listen to your body. Don't push too hard if your coming off something bad or if your feeling crappy; you don't want to get sick again, that would suck:mad:
I hope you start feeling better and whatever has got you feeling yuck is getting handled. Treat yourself first and you'll be riding before you know it.

Duck on Wheels
03-16-2007, 11:25 PM
If you are a top-trained competition cyclist ... or were one within the last decade or so ... you maybe should NOT ride at anything above a leisurely pace with a viral infection. I still recall when one of our olympic and world champion x-country skiers died on a local skiing race a few years after retiring from the world-wide racing game. He'd had the flu a week before, was breathing clear again, but the remnants of the viral infection were enough to cause a heart attack when he got his pulse up to racing speed. It's actually not as dangerous for us wimps who've never been in that kind of shape that brings the heart up to the max of what it can handle. Also, being wimps, when our heart rate starts getting up there and we're breathing hard, we back off. But if you've ever been in really top shape, and if you've learned not to back off from exertion to the level of pain, then do be cautious when you have or recently have had a cold or the flu.