Now that I am ALMOST over this silly virus that I picked up, I can get back into the groove of things.  For me when I break down the whole house breaks down.  I am definitely the engine that keeps things going but I hate when I miss a workout or I can not move like I normally do. Thanks to my daughters and hubby, I was taken good care of all day and night!  How can you prevent catching a cold or even the flu when you are in the middle of training or just living life? UGH. . .for some of us, I think we catch rare colds just to slow us down and get some rest but for others it's just being aware of our surroundings and keeping our environment clean.
If you are a gym rat like myself you may or may not know that the gym carries TONS of germs.  Sometimes you can smell the germs when you walked through the door.  I am sure that I picked up my virus at the gym on Monday.  Moving around, talking to different people and not paying attention to what I was doing with my hands and equipment. . .yep. . .I got it! Here are a few things you can do to prevent catching a cold. These steps are simple but sometimes as adults, we still need to be reminded.
#1 Wash Your Hands

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A hacking cough, a throbbing head, a sore throat, and a nose so stuffed it feels as if you'll never breathe free and clear again. You've got a cold -- or maybe even the flu -- and all you want to do is crawl in bed and sleep. Until you get there. That's when you realize your symptoms are turning any chance for a solid night's rest into the impossible dream. "It's true that many cold and flu symptoms seem to get worse at night, and they can interfere with sleep just at the critical time when...
Most cold and flu viruses are spread by direct contact. Someone who has the flu sneezes onto his or her hand and then touches the telephone, the keyboard, a kitchen glass. The germs can live for hours only to be picked up by the next person who touches the same object. So wash your hands often. If you can't get to a sink, rub an alcohol-based hand sanitizer onto your hands.
#2 Don't Cover Your Sneezes and Coughs With Your Hands
Because germs and viruses cling to your bare hands, muffling coughs and sneezes with your hands often results in passing along your germs to others. When you feel a sneeze or cough coming, use a tissue, then throw it away immediately. If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow.
#3 Don't Touch Your Face
Cold and flu viruses enter your body through the eyes, nose, or mouth. Touching their faces is the major way children catch colds and a key way they pass colds on to their parents.
#4 Do Aerobic Exercise Regularly
Aerobic exercise speeds up the heart to pump larger quantities of blood; makes you breathe faster to help transfer oxygen from your lungs to your blood; and makes you sweat once your body heats up. These exercises help increase the body's natural virus-killing cells.
#5 Eat Foods Containing Phytochemicals
"Phyto" means plants, and the natural chemicals in plants give the vitamins in food a supercharged boost. So put away the vitamin pill, and eat dark green, red, and yellow vegetables and fruits.
#6 Don't Smoke
Statistics show that heavy smokers get more severe colds and more frequent ones.
Even being around smoke profoundly zaps the immune system. Smoke dries out your nasal passages and paralyzes cilia. These are the delicate hairs that line the mucous membranes in your nose and lungs, and with their wavy movements, sweep cold and flu viruses out of the nasal passages. Experts contend that onecigarette can paralyze cilia for as long as 30 to 40 minutes.
#7 Cut Alcohol Consumption
Heavy alcohol use suppresses the immune system in a variety of ways. Heavier drinkers are more prone to initial infections as well as secondary complications. Alcohol also dehydrates the body -- it actually causes more fluid loss from your system than it puts in.
#8 Relax  
If you can teach yourself to relax, you may be able to rev up your immune system. There's evidence that when you put your relaxation skills into action, your interleukins -- leaders in the immune system response against cold and flu viruses -- increase in the bloodstream. Train yourself to picture an image you find pleasant or calming. Do this 30 minutes a day for several months. Keep in mind, relaxation is a learnable skill, but it is not doing nothing. People who try to relax, but are in fact bored, show no changes in blood chemicals.

Posted on November 28, 2012 .