Running with a sore throat or cold (Read 183 times)

Butter Tart

    Do you run with a sore throat or cold? I have heard that it is ok to run if your symptoms are "above the neck" only, but is it still wise?


    Does the weather factor into your decision whether or not to run? e.g. rain, cold, snow,  wind, puddles, slush...

    What if you have some reason for particularly wanting to avoid getting sicker (a race, a wedding, a work commitment...)?

      My rule of thumb is that if you have no fever it is fine to work out but certainly watch the intensity. I wouldn't go out and do a hero work out if not feeling well or have a virus as it will run you down even more.


      Weather has minimal effect other than pouring rain or slush or all ice - then I will hit the treadmill. No one wants to be miserable or risk being injured.

      Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!

        I've been sick since Sunday with some kind of sinus cold thing. I've run every day since but cut back on intensity and volume. For instance, I had an interval workout scheduled for yesterday, but I did an easy run instead. The other days I did about half my normal mileage, probably 2-3 minutes slower than usual. On Sunday I probably should have just taken the day off because I realized after the run that I had a fever. I ended up feeling really horrible for the rest of the day. If I'm just kinda congested, though, running (gently) can often make me feel a little better. Also, I like to run on the treadmill when I'm feeling at all sick, just in case I start to feel really bad during the run. That way I can just hop off and I'm already at home. If I had to run outside I'd try to stay in the neighborhood.

        ROD in Miami

          Whether it's above or below the neck, nothing makes me feel better when I have a cold or flu than a good hard run in the Miami heat followed by a shower.  Makes me feel like new for hours after.


          BUT: That's just my habit and my personal experience and not based on any medical knowledge, etc.



          Bottle Opener

            I don't know if it is smart, but I will run unless I have a high fever.  I don't think it makes my colds last any longer, if anything I often feel like it helps me clear out the junk.

            Racing for Beer & Glory




              I've had a cold over the past week.  I didn't run the last three workouts I had on the calendar for last week because in addition to typical cold-like symptoms (no fever), I felt fatigued (abnormally so).


              I picked back up on Tuesday with a workout easier than I had originally planned, did another easy run yesterday, and jumped back into scheduled activities today.  Over the course of those runs I've still had a bit of congestion and wake up with a little bit of soreness in the throat, but the soreness is at the point where it's from the drainage and not from swelling (i.e., throat doesn't still look red when I shine a light down there).  So far, I haven't had any problems (and this is the first time I've really had an illness that sidelined me since I started running again last year), but I'll reserve judgment on whether I did the right thing until Sunday when I have a couple days of rest ahead of me.


              Chief Unicorn Officer

                Usually run through it, but will also rearrange my week so I can have a rest day on the worst day of the cold or illness. On the worst day, it seems sleep and rest and meds are the best thing. I'd rather take that one day off and feel much better in the following days, than fight it that one day and feel crappy for the next few runs.

                Mile 5:49 - 5K 19:58 - 10K 43:06 - HM 1:36:54

                Don't call me Buttercup!

                  I've always been of the mindset that rest is best when you're sick, but after 2+ weeks of being sidelined by the worst cough I've ever had in my life, I tried to go running yesterday.  I made it .73 miles.   Felt great while I was doing it, but I had a huge coughing fit that wasn't much fun.


                  Some people run no matter what. Some people take it easy.  *shrug*  Generally, though, I've heard that the "rule" is that you're fine unless it's in your chest/lungs.  But YMMV.

                  Slow and steady wins the....  wait a second! I've been lied to! 


                    I had a cold a few weeks ago.  Sore throat and lots of coughing.  I ran through it mostly including doing my speedwork because I couldn't bring myself to miss my scheduled workouts.  (I did skip one easy run though.)  Running at harder than easy pace seemed to trigger a lot of coughing but I was able to get through the workouts and it did get better after a week or so.

                      Timely question for me as I've had either a bad cold or mild case of the flu the past week.  I think it's flu since, yesterday morning, I had a low fever and achy joints.  I felt bad enough to call in sick (also to not get others sick, I guess) and I stayed in bed till about 10AM which is unheard of for me.  I felt much better after sleeping those extra hours and went out at noon for a 3 mile run.  Went very easy and still felt like I had no energy but it was a major mental boost to get out.  Today I felt 100% better than I did yesterday, still ran easy but ran 8.5 miles.  I think whatever I had is receding.  I didn't take any days off during this time but I skipped my scheduled 'light' workout I had planned for this week.  All easy running.

                      dog person

                        I got the flu on Christmas Eve. I took some time off, but not a lot. For one month now I've been dealing with a nasty cough, and just not feeling right. Yesterday, I woke up with a raging sore throat - I'm really getting tired off this. I know the cold, wet January weather here in the Pacific NW doesn't help, but I feel if I would have taken some proper time off from running and work, I probably wouldn't still be dealing with this crud.


                        Next year, I'll get the flu shot.




                          I had my last and longest long run scheduled for this morning ahead of my marathon on the 24th of this month allowing for a 3 week taper. Around 6pm yesterday, i felt my throat itching with imminent signs of a throat infection coming on. DIdnt manage to wake up at 5am for my sceduled run but slept 9 hours instead and woke up with a stuffy nose and some pretty irritating cold. The run-up for the marathon (literally and metaphorically) until now was going smooth but this setback is most annoying.


                          I will see if i am any better tomorrow morning to do the planned workout else will just try some other time next week. Not nice when you have to change training plans so close to the marathon. Symptomatic OCD i think ...


                          For what its worth, started a 3 day course of antibiotics this afternoon, as i want to aggressively get rid of the throat infection for now.

                          I dont sweat. I ooze liquid awesome.

                          Butter Tart

                            Well, my throat was itchy/ticklish on Tuesday, so on Wednesday trying to avert a full-blown cold I took the day off (high winds and rain anyway) thinking I would benefit more from the extra sleep. It didn't work -- I got a cold. Thursday I felt worse so I didn't run. Friday I stayed home from work and slept a lot. Saturday I stayed home and spent the day in my pyjamas. But on Sunday things were looking up, so in the afternoon I went for a short run. I coughed a bit, but the air was crisp and cold and felt good in my lungs. I felt alive for the first time since Tuesday. So I got up early this morning for another short run. Again, totally invigorating and awesome. I feel so happy to be running again.

                            Butter Tart

                              Just came across this article from Runner's World: Should You Run When You're Sick?  It mentions facial pressure (which I had) as a sign of sinus infection and recommends taking 3 days off : "Even without the presence of a fever, says Dr. Dobken, some sinus infections, when stressed by exercise, can lead to pneumonia or, in extreme cases, respiratory failure."  So I guess I did the right thing by taking a few days off.