If you are like many asthma sufferers, you are probably limited to the physical activities and sports you can participate in, like running. Having the desire to run, but restricted by your personal health conditions can seem like a Catch 22 situation, as running with asthma has the potential to provoke an asthma attack. You might also feel like running with this condition can worsen your condition. Naturally, this is all very frustrating!
Believe it or not, however, running with asthma is possible. While you should confer with your doctor first before starting any sort of running routine, it is definitely something that can be accomplished. If your asthma is under control, and you are diligent about taking care of your body, you may be able to avoid the symptoms of asthma all together when you run.
Tips for Athletes with Asthma
If you have the desire to run but feel like your asthma may limit you, take a look at the following tips:
Take your medication.
Make sure you always take your asthma medication before hitting the pavement. Your medication works to relax the muscles that surround your airways. When running, your lungs are going to be working harder and need the extra help that medication provides.
Carry a rescue inhaler.
This is something that any doctor will tell you when you ask about running with asthma. You should never be without a rescue inhaler while you run.
Remembering your rescue inhaler could save you from a trip to the hospital due to an asthma attack while you are out. The inhaler can easily be placed inside the pockets of your running shorts, or even in a secure armband.
Watch the weather.
Before you go running, either check the forecast or step outside to get an idea of what the weather will be like. Sometimes, colder weather makes it harder for those suffering from asthma to breathe, and can also cause flare-ups when you run. When the weather conditions are not ideal, choose to run on the treadmill indoors, or take the day off if you have to.
Asthma sufferers should also check the pollen count. This also aggravates asthma, and it is best not to push your body.
Warm up and cool down.
Although many people do not like to take the time to warm up before they begin running or cool down for a few minutes afterwards, these practices should never be skipped for those suffering from asthma!
Walking before your run gives your body a chance to get used to being outside and allows your lungs to warm up, getting them prepared to work harder. Cooling down afterwards is equally important. Going straight from a hard run to sitting down and resting is not good on your lungs, as they do not have any time to relax slowly. Try walking for a few minutes after you run and your lungs will feel a lot better.
Use a vaporizer.
When you get back from a run, it can be a good idea to do something more to help your lungs recover. The perfect way to do this is by using a vaporizer.
Vaporizers are the perfect remedy for tired or overworked lungs, and are known to be helpful in dealing with asthma. After running, this soothes and relaxes your lungs, even if there was no threat of an attack.
Running might seem impossible when you battle asthma every day, but after speaking with your doctor and making sure that your asthma is under control, use these tips and get your running shoes laced up. Your lungs will appreciate the exercise!
About the Author:
Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer, yoga enthusiast and mom of three in Southern California. In addition to using yoga as a method to improve her breathing, she has also learned a lot about the importance of air quality. Follow her on Facebook today!