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Virus recovery

LbaguleyLbaguley Posts: 161
edited August 2009 in Commuting chat
I was wondering if anyone out there has had any experience of how long it might take to recover sufficiently from viral infections to get back on the bike and start exercising again?

I have had basically the last two weeks off work as I had Shingles. I didn't feel too bad to start off with - the first week I was generally fine, but the second week of the infection, as the rash was starting to (for want of a better phrase) scab over, I felt constantly drained.

I started back at work on Friday as I was feeling much better, but didn't cycle as I knew I wasn't up to that. Now I feel back to 'normal' but I am aware that you're supposed to take it easy when recovering from such illnesses due to the risk of post-viral complications and generally not being physically ready to start exercising properly again.

I have thought about just trying to cycle gently into work, but I know full well that The Game will take me over and I'll be going full bore at it again. Also I have signed up to do a short triathlon at the end of Sept (400m swim, 20k ride and 4k run - I did say it was short!), so I am keen to get training for that - the running and swmming mostly. Can anyone advise me please?

Or should I just MFTU?




  • cjcpcjcp Posts: 13,345
    Did you ask the Doc about how long you should give it?

    Never had Shingles, but if it were me, I'd be back on the bike, but taking it v. easy - no Games! - on the basis that the train has more bugs and germs on it and the lack of fresh air would make me more stressed, which would only get me down again! Not sure abut that tri though - I wouldn't train in earnest for that for another week-10 days (I had enough of a problem training for them when I did them, mind :) ). May be you should not commute by bike every day and run (gently) in/home part of the way on alternate days so any training isn't so intense.
    FCN 2-4.

    "What happens when the hammer goes down, kids?"
    "It stays down, Daddy."
  • AndyMancAndyManc Posts: 1,393
    From what I recall, once you have the shingles virus it remains with you and can resurface if you become run down again.

    I wouldn't be in a rush to start cycling too early, it can take months (maybe a year or so) to fully recover.

    I had shingles over 10yrs ago, the doc told me you have to be totally exhausted to get it, I spent about 6 months asleep because of it. :roll:

    I would ask your GP, it also depends on the length of your commute, your diet , many issues will effect your ability to return to 'normal' .

    Specialized Hardrock Pro/Trek FX 7.3 Hybrid/Specialized Enduro/Specialized Tri-Cross Sport
  • AguilaAguila Posts: 622
    *puts doc hat on*

    Post viral fatigue is common but the question about when to start exercising is down to you, it is certainly not dangerous or medically ill advised at any point. Simply start when you feel up to it.

    Personally I find getting back on the bike hastens my recovery after viruses, equally the longer you remain inactive will mean you are battling both post viral symptoms and lack of fitness when you do get back to it.

    I'd recommend getting back to it as soon as you can.
  • LbaguleyLbaguley Posts: 161
    Excellent - thanks Dr Aguila. Also for the other two responses.

    Think I'm on the mend now, just got a little (self-diagnosed) neuralgia, but nothing paracetemol can't keep at bay.

    I'm going to give 'taking it easy' a go tomorrow, the train this morning was too traumatic to repeat regularly - people bumping and pushing at every opportunity, the constant sniffing and coughing, the acrid smell of cheap deodourants and station coffee and the tinny whining of 'personal' stereos. At least this little interlude has reminded me why I started cycling in the first place :)

    See y'all back on the roads
  • muddlymuddly Posts: 20

    Having recovered from post viral fatigue twice now I would advice you to take it easy, get going, but reduce your effort considerably. I used to commute to work nearly every day and then club ride at the weekend, but now only three times a week and a weekend ride every other weekend. Rush it now and you will seriously set yourself back. If you feel tired aftyer training then that is a clue. I found it a slow process and like a lot of riders a frustrating one to, but push to hard and it will bite back.

    Good luck.
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