Cardio-intensive activities, such as running, and asthma may seem mutually exclusive. Running outside is one of those strong asthma triggers due to the combination of continuous physical exertion and high dust and pollen levels. Still, having asthma does not have to mean you have to give up the track for good.
There is no doubt that this condition poses a major hurdle, but there are ways to deal with it. Marathon-world-record holders like Paula Radcliffe are a living proof that it is possible for asthmatic people not only to enjoy, but also to excel in running. Moreover, this type of physical activity does miracles for strengthening respiratory muscles and blesses you with many other health benefits.
It goes without saying that people who suspect they have asthma should visit a physician and get proper treatment. Likewise, it pays off to have a plan in place in case of the asthma attack. For instance, wearing a medical tag alert can notify first responders right away and save valuable time. And those with severe asthma should consider running with a friend.
Asthma medication is beneficial because it relaxes the muscles around airways. Quick-relief medication is also effective as a preventive and prophylactic tool and it kicks in after a few minutes. This means that runners can take advantage of it before the running session in order to manage the symptoms. A daily use of medication, as well as rescue inhalers, is even more important for those with chronic asthma.
Nuisances In The Air
Time of the day, season, and location can make a huge difference. First off, air and traffic pollution in bustling urban jungles increases the risk of having an asthma attack and can worsen the condition. Therefore, avoid running next to busy roads and go for areas with lots of grass and trees. Furthermore, note that pollen allergy can add fuel to the fire. Thus, it is recommended to go outside when pollen counts are at their lowest.
In addition, try to take a holistic approach and make sure to lead a healthy lifestyle. Use the best air purifiers to cleanse the air at home and alleviate the symptoms. Many people overlook that indoor air pollution is just as big of a problem as the pollution outside, and considering the amount of time we spend indoors, it can be an even more sinister menace.
More Power To You
Despite what some people think, skipping a warm-up is not a good idea. Yes, it may save a bit of lung power for running, but evidence suggests that this actually increases the likelihood of an attack. And do not fret if you experience coughing and wheezing during the warm-up routine. It will induce a minor respiratory muscle spasm, which means that it will take several hours before you will have a spasm like that again.
Pickups, bursts of fast-paced running, are a good way to prepare for the main thing. Bear in mind also that the recovery sessions in between intervals help a great deal when it comes to exercise-induced asthma, as they give your lungs enough time to recover. At last, people who still endure difficulties running can change the approach. Namely, it is possible to train for distance, not pace and time: Marathons and half-marathons could be much more suitable for you than sprints.
On The Right Tracks
Asthma does not have to stop you in your tracks. With a bit of caution, adjustments, and smart thinking you can overcome chronic asthma and exercise properly. As long as you tailor the running program to your specific needs, there is no need to avoid running altogether. Just be careful with environmental triggers and adhere to the best practices explained above. You should be able to hit the road and keep breathing nice and easy.