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To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...(15 posts)

To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...Kristin
Sep 10, 2001 9:03 AM
I now haven't ridden since Tuesday. A major allergy attack sent me to bed for the entire weekend. Physically, I feel okay now, but have no energy. Just getting from the condo to the car and from the car to the office was an effort. I don't want to push myself too hard, but I'd like to ride. In the past, being a sedentary person, recovering slowly was not an issue. At this point, I don't want to skip too many days, as I'm trying to put distance between myself and that old life-style.

For those allergy sufferer's out there. If you ever expereince a tiredness after an attack, how do you work back into an exercise routine? Did go out and ride anyway? Or wait till you were back to full strength?
Riding seems to have almost cured my allergies ...Humma Hah
Sep 10, 2001 9:11 AM
... it may just be coincidence, maybe I finally just got over them, but I'm having much less problem with allergies now than before I got back into riding.

I've had two episodes of what may have been Exercise-Induced Asthma (EIA), however. These hit me in the middle of long, hard rides, and hit as hard as a serious bonk. In each case, I started out already tired from a hard ride the previous day or earlier in the day. I also started out with a little case of allergy-like sniffles. There may also be a tie-in to acidic foods (in one case, I'd carb-loaded on spagetti with tomato sauce). Low pH (high acidity) is supposed to be a trigger for EIA,

I'd say, if suffering allergies, ride, but ride gently. You might even try a dust mask. And avoiding acid foods or foods that aggravate your allergies is probably a good idea.
re: To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...harlett
Sep 10, 2001 9:27 AM
what substances cause your allergic reactions? what are your reactions?
I always leave all those facts out, don't I?Kristin
Sep 10, 2001 9:40 AM
These are fall seasonal allergies. Probably mold or weeds. Symptoms were sore throat, severe sinus pain, stuffy head, sneezing and iching. The iching is the worst. Inner ear, sinuses, palette and eyes! Did you ever feel like peeling your face off so you could get a good scratch? Thanks goodness for rain.
What do you take to help, if anything?look271
Sep 10, 2001 2:50 PM
My allergies appear to be less severe than yours, but I use the newer, stronger, Allegra. 1X a day and I almost feel human. I feel better on my bike. It seems to help.
Allegra now...Kristin
Sep 10, 2001 3:34 PM
I have taken Clariton for 2 years as needed (Mar-May & Aug-Oct). I usually don't deal with more than an ichy nose and some sneezes.

This particular attack was strange. For whatever reason, Fridays train ride home became a nightmare. My throat became sore, then my head ached. By 10pm I wanted to die. I basically survived on Nyquil. On Saturday, called my Dr. and described my symptoms. She was confident it was allergies and immediately switched me to Allegra. I was still sick yesterday but up and around. Now, I just feel weak. Its like it took all the energy out of me.
Not to doubt your Doc, but...look271
Sep 10, 2001 3:48 PM
Sounds like more of a virus type thing to me,IMHO. Hope you feel better soon! Go for a ride; really, it'll clear your head. Take it easy, though.Just make sure there's no one behind you should the need for a "snot-rocket" arise. (Yeah, I know, GROSS!)
Allegra now...Skip
Sep 10, 2001 6:43 PM
Everyone is different, and what works for one may not work for another. Claritin, for me, was pretty worthless, but Hismanal (also once a day) was much better for systemic symptoms. Nasal sprays such as Flonase and Beconase may help also. Have you been skin tested and desensitized? That would be the most specific, if it works for you. Some of my worst allergies were there outside Chicago - first week in Aug. till first frost.
I ride to clear my head (in more ways than 10).gust-of-sun
Sep 10, 2001 9:37 AM
I used to get terrible allergies at work. cubicles seemed designed to grow dust mites. I'd come home when my eyes watered too much to see the monitor. I learned that jumping on the bike for a short ride up and down the lakefront was enough to stop the immune response (runny nose, watery eyes). i learned later from my allergist (Dr. Kentor in Evanston) that it's about 50/50. 50% of people show no allergy improvement from exercise, but don't necessarily get worse. 50% show great improvement from exercise. try it out to see which half you're in.

as far as the decreased energy level, you've just got to force yourself to get out. you don't have to ride hard if you don't feel like it, just find ways to get yourself outside and back on the bike. set up a ride with a friend so you feel bad about backing out, hide your car keys so you have to bike to the store, you get the idea. even though i may not feel so hot when i start a ride, i'm always glad i got out after i finish.

good luck
gust-of-sun
re: To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...raboboy
Sep 10, 2001 9:56 AM
I'd ask your Allergist about your specific conditions and see what he has to say about it.
re: To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...harlett
Sep 10, 2001 10:29 AM
try short rides that don't take too much of your energy. see if it helps your mental well-being doing something you've come to really enjoy. the warm, humidified air from water makes swimming a good exercise while suffering from your reactions.
a few ideas for precaution against further weed/grass pollen inundation while riding:
stay indoors from 7 am to noon while the pollen count is usually the highest. wearing sun glasses help deflect some of the pollen from your eyes. wearing a cap helps keep the pollen out of your hair. change your clothing after coming in from the ride.
Have you tried Sudafed?CJ3
Sep 10, 2001 10:36 AM
Medication may not be your answer, but I use Sudafed for this and it works for me. I also find it doesn't put me to sleep, but your experience may differ. It's over the counter, although some stores have it locked because it gets stolen a lot. However, in the height of the allergy season ( 2 weeks in spring) I have to stay indoors a lot because the meds don't handle it. Maybe a trainer would be useful.
Have you tried Sudafed?Ken56
Sep 10, 2001 12:08 PM
Having suffered hayfever allergies in the late summer season since I was 9 years old(I'm now 56), I can sympathize with your situation. When I was younger, I would have to lay on a couch in an air conditioned room during all of my leisure hours in order to make it through the day. I didn't take any medications because they always put me to sleep and I didn't like that groggy feeling. As I've gotten older, the allergies have improved. I've been biking during allergy season for the past 10 years now. I just make sure I have plenty of tissues or handkercchiefs with me in case of an allergy attack. When that happens, I just stop and sneeze and wheeze until it's over, and then I continue. Try it and see, you don't have to go at breakneck speed. Good luck.
Ken
re: To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...GregJ
Sep 10, 2001 3:56 PM
Allergy season is just starting for me as well, fall is the worst time of year. I usually notch back the exertion level when I am suffering. Sometimes I get asthma as well as the usual hayfever symptoms. Although the asthma is mild, it is unpredictable so I usually carry an albuterol inhaler this time of year. I manage OK with OTC meds, Benydryl or Actifed as needed, mostly in the evenings, I don't like to use these products while working or driving or riding. Unless I am feeling really bad I don't let it stop me much, but it does slow me down on the bike and off.
re: To ride or not to ride? question for allergy sufferers...Lone Gunman
Sep 10, 2001 4:50 PM
Doc put me on Claritin and Flonase. No problems. Claritin also has a decongestant version. I have a tendancy to get sinus infections at this time of year that sap the energy right out of me.