Back at it …
After a ten-day hiatus, I made it back into the gym today.
Talk about a shock! My conditioning as I entered the ring with my trainer Lennox Blackmoore was at about z-e-r-o! But, that was to be expected after having fought off a lousy cold and its aftereffects.
Yes, I did manage to spar four rounds–but it was charity! Really. We were at half speed at best and I admit to feeling a bit light-heading as I shadow boxed. Giving into the reality of not being quite back to my usual level of fitness, after four rounds of sparring I took it slow and went three rounds on the upper cut bag and four on the speed bag before doing sit-ups.
Given the season, a lot of folks are in the throes of colds and flu and need to sort out just when to get back to the gym.
The following are some tips on how to go about it:
1. If you’ve been really sick with fever and an infection or if the virus that’s been plaguing you has left your muscles and joints achy and weak, you really should wait until your symptoms are pretty much done. You also don’t want to infect anyone else so if you’re still sneezing and coughing you should hold off until you are no longer contagious.
2. When you do head back, remember that your body has just been through an ordeal. And no–you are not going to perform to you usual ability, nor should you even if you think you can do it. The body needs adequate time to recover. You will also need time to get your body back to its former conditioning–and depending upon the severity of your illness will require time, effort and patience.
3. Don’t think that you can immediately pound away at full speed. Whether it’s boxing, an hour of yoga, jogging in the park or working out on weight machines, cut your workout down to a reasonable time and cut yourself some slack when you find that your performance is off. No matter what shape you’re in a miserable cold is going to slow you down and your body needs time to get back to full strength. And, if you’ve had a couple of days of fever, your body has been hard at work fending of miserable germs–so it’ll take that much longer to get back to full strength.
4. Give yourself adequate recovery time, meaning if you run everyday, you don’t have to immediately get back to your normal schedule. Run on day one, rest a day, and then get back to it. In this way, you really are giving your body a chance to fully recover. Make certain that you are also keeping yourself adequately hydrated before, during and after workouts. The body can become slightly dehydrated even with a cold–which also takes time to recover from.
Most of all, remember to keep it slow and before you know it, you’ll be back at 100%!