Check out this great article from Runner's World Magazine. It explains why many runners catch a cold leading up to or right after a hard run or race. It also includes many useful tips on how to avoid the sniffles.
Many runners would rather die than take a sick day from running. If you are already sick with a cold, how do you know if it's still ok to run? Well, considering you still feel up for a run, symptoms such as a chest cold, bronchial infections, and body aches require time off. Symptoms such as a runny nose, sneezing, or stuffiness shouldn't pose a risk to a runner continuing a workout. But remember, there are times when you may be feeling run down and going for a run could do you more harm than good. If your temperature is above 99 degrees, skip the run. During exercise, your heart pumps large amounts of blood from your muscles to your skin, dissapating your body heat. If you have a fever, your temperature will rise even higher, putting additional strain on the heart as it works to keep your body temp down. You also may have achy muscles while you're sick and running on these muscles could leave you prone to injuries. Listen to your body! When you're feeling better, ease back into your training program slowly.
Written by: Genie Bianchi, RRCA Coach