You Got Sick. Now What Do You Do?

              I’ve always prided myself as being a healthy adult with a very strong immune system. Making daily habits of eating healthy and taking care of my body in the gym has helped me achieve a fine tuned immune system. I do not get sick often. And I’m not trying to brag or rub it in anyone’s face. I simply want to help and share the habits I’ve tried and tested throughout my life.

              Fighting against viruses starts before we get sick. Obviously drinking plenty of water and eating a nutritious diet that is dense with plenty of vitamins is key. After that, having an exercise schedule is also crucial to support your immune system. A healthy lifestyle that encompasses both nutrition and fitness is the best proactive approach to fighting off diseases and illnesses before they even arrive.. This is the most effective defense against any viral infection.

              Now that we understand what it takes to build up a strong immune system, let’s look at the steps to take after we get sick. Although having a strong immune system will drastically lower your chances of getting sick, nothing is 100% effective. I don’t think there’s anyone out there who has never gotten sick before. For that reason, we need to know what to do once we are sick in order to get over the illness and back to normalcy. These steps will not only help you speed up the recover process, it will also make the dog days of the sickness feel less intense.

DISCOLSURE: I am not a doctor. I only speak on the tips and tricks that have helped me through my experiences.

Here are the steps to follow in order of priority:

    1. This is rule number one for a reason. Any flu or cold is going to dehydrate you immensely. Being dehydrated brings down your immune system so we want to replace those fluids as much as possible. Drink as much water as you can take. You can even mix in a Gatorade or other sports drink for the electrolytes to keep hydrated.
  2. Practice Proper Hygiene
    1. Proper hygiene should be a priority for anyone who is sick. The reason for this is not only for your benefit, but more so for those around you who are at risk of catching what you have. Make sure to whip down items you touch or breath, cough, or sneeze near.
  3. Take Your Vitamins
    1. Your body needs proper vitamins to help with defeating the virus. Vitamins C, D, and Zinc are the 3 most important vitamins/minerals to take to help your immune system. These vitamins should be taken with a meal, preferably breakfast or lunch.
  4. Get Plenty of Rest
    1. Plenty of rest is necessary for recovery. At nighttime, take some sleep aid to help you get a good night’s sleep. I like to either Advil PM or Nyquil to help me get a healthy night’s sleep. Sleep is the ultimate recovery tool for us. And it’s often that during sickness, we get restless during the night. To combat this restlessness, it will help to take something to help yourself fall asleep and stay asleep.
  5. Sweat It Out
    1. Although we just talked about rest, this step can also be very beneficial. This step is often overlooked but is a great one if possible. Breaking a sweat through exercise has so many benefits when getting over a cold or the flu. Although in some severe cases, getting out of bed may be troubling enough. But if you can muster up the strength to get a sweat in, I highly recommend it. Keep in mind that you will want to stay away from anyone during your workout to eliminate transmission. But if you have a home gym, then that is perfect. My favorite is a hard 30 minutes on the stationary bike. At the end of it I’m dripping in sweat and feel amazing. If no home gym, there’s always walking or running outside. Getting your heartrate up like when exercising with speed up the recovery process that’s going on inside your body. Your bodily fluids will be moving around faster and more nutrients will get where they need to go quicker. Although it’s likely that you feel like crap from being sick, getting in some exercise is my favorite home remedy for feeling better and getting over my sickness quickly.

There you have it. That is my ultimate “get well soon” package. It has helped me numerous times in the past and I will continue to take this approach whenever possible. This approach has not only helped me from becoming sick, but also helped me recovery quickly and swiftly. What tips do you have for getting over an illness?

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