Friday, January 6, 2012

Take Mom's Advice: Don't Overdo It, You'll Get Sick

It's the first few days of freezing cold weather here in D.C., so top of mind for me right now is how to avoid getting the winter flu. I always seem to get sick when the weather changes. Turns out, one thing I can do to ward off sickness is not run a marathon, according to this article that came out today on ScienceDaily's website.

 Well, good, I wasn't planning on it.
While a little bit of exercise has been proven to keep you healthier and avoid the common cold or flu, studies reported a 2-6 fold increase in risk of developing an upper respiratory infection after you engage in prolonged strenuous exercise. There is a lot of science in it, but I guess endurance activities can turn down Natural Killer cell activity - those cells help your body fight viral infections. It's interesting, because every time I have trained for a half marathon (I've done 4 or 5), I have gotten sick just as my mileage is at the highest point (about two weeks before). I have never thought about it, but maybe this shows that my mom was right (as always). If you overdo it, you'll probably get sick.

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