The season of winter sniffles and colds is just around the corner and I appear to have been visited by the snot fairy a bit early this year. Despite this, I've still had to get around and for me that means cycling. Cycling whilst ill can be challenging and even unpleasant. Coughs and colds can often make you feel like your lung capacity has been reduced, making physically demanding activities such as fast cycling or hill-climbing difficult as you struggle to catch your breath.
Despite the potential for cycling whilst ill to be an unpleasant experience, there are a few things you can do you compensate for your weakened physical state:
- Don't rush, it's not a race after all. Give yourself a bit more time than usual for a given trip, cycling more slowly will reduce the demands which cycling places on your body.
- Take a break. If it's all getting a bit too much, get off the bike and walk it along for a little while. It'll give you a chance to catch your breath whilst still making progress towards your destination.
- Walk up the hills, ride the flats and the downhill sections. Riding on a flat or downhill shouldn't pose too much of a problem, even if you are feeling under the weather. Walking the uphill sections will remove some of the most physically demanding parts of the ride whilst providing you with a chance to rest.
Please feel free to share your own tips and experiences of cycling whilst under the weather in the comments below.