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Question
Posted by: Natasha | 2010/09/28

Flu like symptoms after exercise

Hi
Every time I exercise I get flu like symptoms that stays with me for atleast a week or two. My throat starts burning then I start coughing. My body &  head aches. Its just like having flu. I did not even do strenous exercise this time round. I climbed 200 steps casually. That afternoon my throat was sore &  the next day I started coughing &  getting all the other symptoms. Please help. I really love doing exercise but just cant get into a proper exercise program due to this. As soon as I start I''m sick for atleast 2 weeks. Hope you have some information for me. Thank you.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageFitnessDoc

Hi Natasha

I actually don't think the two are linked. At least, let me clarify that to say that I don't know of any other situation where such light exercise would cause those symptoms. Yes, if you exert yourself hugely then it is possible to develop symptoms as though sick - this happens to marathon runners, for example. That happens because the high rates of air flow irritate our air passages, they become inflamed and we feel sick.

So that was my thinking until you mentioned your latest bout where you just walked up the steps - that suggests that maybe the second occurrence was either a co-incidence, or there is something else there, not related to training.

So I've never heard of this before, I am therefore grabbing at straws, but I'd say you might try again and see what happens if you exercise in a controlled environment, preferably outdoors, and really take it easy. You might try to supplement, but really, there's no single supplement that jumps out as being a 'magic bullet' - glutamine and zinc are two that have gotten some attention recently, so you can try them, but they come with no guarantees!

Ross

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Our users say:
Posted by: fitnessdoc | 2010/09/28

Hi Natasha

I actually don't think the two are linked. At least, let me clarify that to say that I don't know of any other situation where such light exercise would cause those symptoms. Yes, if you exert yourself hugely then it is possible to develop symptoms as though sick - this happens to marathon runners, for example. That happens because the high rates of air flow irritate our air passages, they become inflamed and we feel sick.

So that was my thinking until you mentioned your latest bout where you just walked up the steps - that suggests that maybe the second occurrence was either a co-incidence, or there is something else there, not related to training.

So I've never heard of this before, I am therefore grabbing at straws, but I'd say you might try again and see what happens if you exercise in a controlled environment, preferably outdoors, and really take it easy. You might try to supplement, but really, there's no single supplement that jumps out as being a 'magic bullet' - glutamine and zinc are two that have gotten some attention recently, so you can try them, but they come with no guarantees!

Ross

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