How to Exercise Outdoors This Allergy Season
By Leigh Ann Thomas, Certified Personal Trainer
Seasonal allergies don’t have to keep your workouts confined to a gym this fall. The solution? Knowing your triggers and how to treat them will allow you to carry on with those outdoor activities you enjoy.
Know Your Triggers
More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies every year. While symptoms and severity can be different for each person, it’s important to know which allergens affect you and how you react to them. The most typical fall allergies include mold, pollen and ragweed. Most websites like AAAAI.org provide the allergen levels and status in your area. Researching when the allergens are most prevalent will benefit you when planning your next outdoor workout or adventure.
Ragweed, mold and pollen are high in the afternoons when it’s dry and windy. If you’re an early bird and like to exercise in the mornings, you’re in luck. Otherwise, pollen tends to strike while the sun is up. Exercising in an area that hosts a lot of pollen, such as a field or grassy area, can become irritating and produce those unwanted symptoms such as a runny nose, itchy eyes, inflammation, asthma and fatigue. These symptoms can make breathing difficult and will most likely derail your workout. In a perfect world, avoiding the times and areas of exercise where the allergens are most active would be ideal. However, most people don’t have the luxury of avoiding these times and places, in which case allergy treatment is necessary.
Allergy drops are the most effective solution when managing your allergy symptoms. Allergy drops desensitize you from the very allergens that you suffer from, in addition to improving and strengthening your immune system over time. Over-the-counter drugs just mask the allergy symptoms, not actually fixing the underlying cause of your symptoms, and can warrant unwanted side effects such as nausea, drowsiness and headaches. Sublingual allergy drops are convenient and safe, naturally dissolving under the tongue, improving your immunity and allowing you to continue living your life.
Outdoor Exercise Tips:
- Drink up! – Dry air and fluctuation in temperature can make it difficult to stay hydrated. Staying hydrated during (and after) your workouts will help flush out toxins and allergens that may keep you from performing your best.
- Improvise – If the allergens are bothering you too much during your outdoor workout, try working out at home in your driveway or garage. Your house can block and prevent the wind from kicking up the pollen so that you can still exercise.
- Prepare – Always keep your allergy gear nearby in case of a flare up. These items include allergy drops, eye drops, saline spray and make-up remover wipes. Also make sure to change and shower after your workout to remove all pollen residue (and sweat) from your skin.
We Can Help
Take our symptom checker to find out if allergies could be the cause of your symptoms. You don’t have to let allergies interrupt your daily routine and workout goals. At Hotze Health & Wellness Center, allergy management is achievable. Let us help you get your life back today!