The coronavirus has effectively stopped thousands of sports enthusiasts from returning to regular physical activity. Many still wonder whether they can practice their favourite sport safely and healthily after the SARS-CoV-2 infection. These doubts are dispelled by Medicover Poland expert Michał Chudzik, MD, an internist, cardiologist and expert in lifestyle medicine, who is also the initiator of research on recovered patients.
Michał Chudzik, MD, has recently answered some of the most burning questions posed by users and employees of sports facilities. Therefore, it is worth getting acquainted with the specialist’s opinion before you decide to subject your body to a significant physical effort again.
Is exercise recommended for recovering patients and why?
M.D.Michal Chudzik: The indication for training after undergoing COVID-19 is medical evaluation and exclusion of complications. The SARS-CoV-2 infection is a very heavy burden on the whole body. During the recovery period, an extremely important aspect of health is the restoration of immunity and vitality. To activate all resources, it is necessary to “force” the body to mobilize in a controlled way. Thanks to this the regeneration will be faster.
What should be taken into account when planning training for a person who has undergone COVID-19?
Important aspects for those starting out
It is important to have a consultation with your doctor to check for complications and contraindications to exercise.
Aspects important for people returning to physical activity after a break
In this group it is also worth consulting the state of health, the doctor should exclude complications and contraindications to return to physical activity. Each case should be looked at individually and the frequency, intensity and type of training should be adjusted. Each workout should be preceded by a specific warm-up.
You should also consider whether a calorie deficit is advisable and whether you can maintain your current rate of progression or perhaps limit your training development for a while.
At what time can I start training after an infection?
You can starttraining after COVID-19 no sooner than 4 weeks after the end of the infection.
Should I do any special tests before returning to training?
Definitely yes. It is recommended that you see your family doctor and have basic blood work and an EKG done.
What are the most common symptoms of complications after COVID-19 and how does this translate to possible training?
Without medical consultation, you should not begin physical activity if you are experiencing symptoms such as shortness of breath/huffiness, chest pains, coughing, feeling of fast, uneven heartbeat, excessive fatigue – more than 50% to pre-COVID-19 performance level, headaches. Also, blood pressure values above 140/90 and saturation values below 95% warrant medical consultation.
After COVID-19 it is advisable to have a comprehensive health review and consider respiratory physiotherapy.
What should a coach be concerned about when training with a client after COVID-19? In what situations should you reduce the intensity of training, and when should you stop and suggest a visit to the doctor?
Symptoms that should worry the trainer and stop training are: shortness of breath/huffiness, chest pains, feeling of fast, irregular heartbeat, headaches, dizziness, fainting, muscle pain, joint pains.
Diet and supplements – what can recovering patients support themselves with to get back in shape faster?
During the recovery period a proper diet is crucial for quick recovery. Reasonable supplementation is worth considering if it will complement a healthy diet, and not replace balanced meals. The supplements taken should be of appropriate quality and the amount taken should be consistent with their intended use. It is advisable to seek the advice of an experienced trainer or nutritionist in order to select a supplementation.
Should I take a break from physical activity before and after taking the vaccine (1st and 2nd dose)? How long?
After vaccination, a 1 week break is recommended for persons who have already exercised before and know their body and its capabilities. On the other hand, a 2-week break is recommended for those who are beginning to train or have had a break of more than 3 months. Of course, in case of alarming post-vaccination symptoms, you should not undertake physical activity without medical consultation.
Source: Medicover Poland; Photo: FreepikLeave a comment