12 Tips to run through allergy season

Wheeze, sniff, atichoo…snot rocket.  Just when the joy of putting Winter behind you arrives…so does the dreaded allergy season that can irritate even the happiest Spring runner.

A running nose, watery eyes and itchy skin can make for a terrible run any time, but during allergy season we often have all three at once combined with difficulty breathing! Turns out the harsh winter, will make levels of pollen and ragweed even higher this year.
Running Through Allergy SeasonHere are a few tips to help you enjoy your training with less suffering:

Medicine: The obvious first solution if you are having a lot of symptoms is to try an over the counter solution like Allegra or Claritin. However, as I can attest, this alone may not be enough to make your runs great during the high pollen season. What it will do is mitigate symptoms, meaning less sneezing, snot rockets, coughing, itching and headaches while you run.
**NOTE: After trial and error, I’ve found it’s best to take medicine AFTER your run. Experience and studies I’ve found show it can hinder breathing during the workout.

Honey: A long time home remedy for helping with a sore throat, a teaspoon of LOCAL honey is also great for curbing allergy symptoms. Consider it your pre-run gel or combine it with your PB and bread before heading out the door.

Foods: Foods that decrease inflammation can help reduce allergic reactions! A few great options: apples, broccoli, kale, citrus fruits, spinach, turmeric, garlic, chia and avocado .

Hat: Not only does a hat can keep particles out of your eyes, but also from catching in your hair. Hair gels and sprays act like a magnet holding on to pollen from the air, which means even after you return inside the allergens are with you.

Disrobe: If you have neighbors, you might wait til you hit the bathroom Smile. Otherwise, start making a habit of removing shoes and stripping off layers immediately when coming in from a run. It’s easy to spread allergens throughout the house via shoes or clothing as you sit on any surface.

Shower before bed: Be sure to shower before changing or ever laying down at night. The goal is both to clear off your skin and to ensure you don’t transfer any allergens to your pillow, which will ensure you wake up looking more dog tired than bright eyed and bushy tailed.

Sunglasses: I have harped on wearing athletic sunglasses for UV protection and to keep your face relaxed, but during allergy season they have the added benefit of keeping all the flying debris in the air out of your eyes. 

Eye drops: For consistently itchy eyes, use eye drops before you head out and as soon as you get home to keep them washed out and moisturized.

Lotion: A light layer of lotion may cause you to sweat more, but provides a light barrier. As your warm sweaty skin mixes with allergens that intensifies the itch.

Rain: Running right after or even during a rain shower means cleaner air! The dust, pollen etc. is knocked down and can make for easier breathing.

Extended warm-up: Give the lungs time to open up and adjust by stopping after the first 1/2-1 mile to walk or stretch, then you should be able to continue the run much more comfortably.

Treadmill: If all else fails, it’s time to embrace the technology age and jump on the treadmill!

Other posts in the 13.1 series: 8 coaches on your first half, half marathon race check list, post race recovery {when can you run again}, how to distinguish discomfort from pain, and avoiding runners trots.

A crazy week where I couldn’t quite decide if I wanted to taper or not for the Palmetto Relay. In the end I just ran what felt right and enjoyed the race!

Mar 24 –  20 min walk | 30 min walk + Runner’s World Rapid Muscle/Core
Mar 25 – #treadmillTuesday 10 miles {avg 9:12 | 139} + 20 min walk | 30 min walk + stretch
Mar 26 – Upper body + 40 min walk | 30 min walk + 2 mile run
Mar 27 – Yoga | Rest and travel to Charleston for Palmetto 200
Mar 28 – Leg 1 9.26 miles | Leg 2 8.83 miles
Mar 22 – Leg 3 7.47 miles
Mar 23 – Travel back to Orlando, walk, yogaBestfoot This Week Link-Up

Time to share how you put your #bestfoot forward last week. Your posts will appear on 3 blogs each time you link up: here, Krysten of Darwinian Fail and Ericka of SweetLifeEricka.


A few spots remain open in the Half Marathon Training Group >> Details here.
A recap of the Palmetto 200 to come later this week!! Right now, recovery, catching up with my Spring participants and sleep! Running_motivation_thumb

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