Tricks To Get Back In The Pool Faster When Being Sick 

A cold, flu, virus, sinus and/or ear infections can throw your training routine off pretty quickly. Getting sick is just a part of life that we all have to go through. No matter how hard you try to stay on top of taking your vitamins and supplements, once someone on your team catches a cold it tends to run rapidly through your whole team, especially at the beginning of the school year. So, how do you get back into the pool faster after being sick? Today I am sharing with you 5 tips for easing back into your training after being sick even when you still might not be at your full 100%. 

Tip 1: Listen To Your Body, Make Changes Accordingly 

As you are getting back into your training regimen it is extremely important to listen to how your body is feeling. Observe where your body might be holding extra tension, or if you are sore in your abdominals from coughing a lot. If you find that you are still extremely fatigued, achy, and exhausted, maybe it’s time to talk with your coach to take a rest day or ask for a smooth aerobic workout rather than a race pace set. Don’t be afraid to speak up and try to adjust your training plan or schedule with your coach and athletic trainer. The more you try to push yourself when you are sick, feeling sick, or on the tail end of your illness, it might actually make things worse and harder to get back into your training. 

Tip 2: Ease Back In

From the latter, your body is fighting off some sort of virus or infection, you should respect your body and ease back into training. Don’t go all out and try to push your body at 100% if it’s not ready to do that. A good rule of thumb is to talk with your coach and see if you can take rest during the set, or only swim for an hour instead of two on the first day back and ease back into the week. Consider just lifting and focus on maintaining your strength and swimming a short distance, then head home to get good rest. Slowly build back into things so your body is able to heal properly. It may take a week or so to feel back to normal. 

Tip 3: Get 8-10 Hours of Sleep

Sleeping can actually be pretty difficult when you are sick. Be sure you do your best to get 8-10 hours of sleep because most times when we begin to feel sick it’s due to lack of sleep, eating nutritious foods, and staying up too late. If you have a hard time falling or staying asleep try listening to white noise, reading a book before bed, putting your phone away, or taking the appropriate cold or flu medicines in order to sleep better. Getting the appropriate amount of sleep will help your body quickly recover.

Tip 4: Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Staying hydrated when you are sick can be difficult, but it is so important to keep up with drinking water and electrolytes so you do not experience dehydration. You can drink things like orange juice, healthy electrolyte drinks like Nuun tablets and powders, Re-Lyte, Harmless Coconut Water or try making your own electrolyte drinks, that is if you are up for that task when you are sick. Replacing the fluids and electrolytes you lose when you are sick is important because it can loosen up mucus and help relieve some congestion. Don’t forget you can drink plenty of teas to help soothe your throat and hot lemon water with honey to help decrease your cold symptoms. Nothing is better than cozying up with a cup of tea on the couch or bed with a comfy blanket when you are sick. 

Tip 5: Fuel Your Body Properly

When you are sick it’s important to eat healthy and nutrient-dense foods. Although it can be tough to eat when you are sick, think about eating smaller, more frequent meals filled with protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, whole grains, vitamins and minerals. Be sure to avoid junk food like chips, sweets, and sugary drinks (pop or soda). If it is too difficult to consume food while you are sick, always stick to the BRAT Diet. That is all bland foods that won’t bother your stomach such as Bananas, Rice, Applesauce and Toast. This is probably what your parents gave you when you were younger and had the flu or any sickness. 

I hope you find these tips helpful when you encounter an illness. Be well and happy training!

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