Health & Wellness Articles

Exercising with Seasonal Allergies

Don't Let Allergens Interfere with Your Workouts

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During Your Workout
Here are some tips that will help prevent and reduce your allergy symptoms so you can exercise comfortably.
  • If you're allergic to dust mites, you can avoid breathing indoor dust by exercising outdoors.
  • If you're allergic to grasses and weeds, avoid these allergens by exercising indoors during the height of the allergy season.
  • Air pollution can trigger a tightening of the airways in sensitive individuals, making it difficult to breathe when exercising on sidewalks—and even up to 50 feet away from the road. Avoid contact with outdoor pollutants (near busy roads, for example) by exercising at low-traffic times and locations or exercising indoors.
  • If you're allergic to pollen and want to exercise outdoors, plan your workouts for times when pollen counts are lowest. They tend to peak between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., so skip an early morning workout in favor of an afternoon or evening exercise session.
  • If your seasonal allergies are severe, you may need to limit your outdoor workouts completely—especially when pollen counts are at their peak levels.
  • Remember that outdoor allergens like pollen can travel several miles. Although you may feel better when exercising further away from allergens like grass and trees, you may still exhibit allergy symptoms while on a tennis court, an asphalt track, or even at the beach.
  • To prevent itchy, watery eyes when outdoors, wear wrap-around sunglasses to prevent allergens and wind from compounding the problem.
  • Consider wearing a paper face mask to filter out allergens while you breathe heavily during exercise. Continued ›
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About The Author

Nicole Nichols Nicole Nichols
A certified personal trainer and fitness instructor with a bachelor's degree in health education, Nicole loves living a healthy and fit lifestyle and helping others do the same. Nicole was formerly SparkPeople's fitness expert and editor-in-chief, known on the site as "Coach Nicole." Make sure to explore more of her articles and blog posts.

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