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Exercising after illness or an injury: A Guide to Rebuilding your Routine

Indoor Cycling na een blessure of ziekte

Exercising after illness or an injury can be a daunting task. You may be eager to get back into your fitness routine, but it’s important to proceed with caution to avoid setbacks or re-injury. In this guide, we’ll explore some essential tips and considerations for safely resuming exercise after illness or injury.

Starting Exercising after Illness

First checklist before you start to exercise again:

  • Consult a healthcare professional
    In cases of serious injury or illness, it’s crucial to see a doctor or physical therapist to assess your fitness level and receive personalized advice.
  • Begin with light exercises
    Start with low-impact activities such as light walking or cycling to gradually reintroduce movement and assess your body’s response.
  • Gradually increase intensity
    Build up exercise intensity and duration slowly to allow your muscles and joints to adapt to the strain.
  • Focus on injury-specific exercises
    Incorporate stretching, strength, and stability exercises targeted at recovering from your specific injury.
  • Set realistic goals
    Create a schedule and establish achievable goals to gradually improve your athletic performance.
  • Prioritize rest and recovery
    Allow ample rest between workouts to give your body time to heal and prevent overexertion.
  • Continue seeking professional guidance
    Maintain regular communication with your healthcare provider or physical therapist for ongoing advice and support throughout your recovery journey.

Indoor Cycling After an Injury

If you have a long-term injury, or want to start exercising after illness, Indoor Cycling is suitable in many cases to maintain your fitness level. Physical therapists often recommend Indoor Cycling during the rehabilitation process. This is because it’s a low-impact sport. That means there is little impact on your joints. Especially for people with knee, hip or ankle injuries, Indoor Cycling is a safe form of cardio. In addition, Indoor Cycling has the added advantage that it can be practised anytime and anywhere.

It is good to continue to exercise lightly during an injury. This way, your body recovers faster and better. In fact, exercising gets your heart rate up, which makes your body process waste products faster. Also, during your recovery period, you appeal to your immune system to work harder. This is also beneficial for the recovery of your injury. In addition, it is nice to keep your fitness level up, so you can make the best comeback!

exercising after illness

Checklist exercising with a cold

  • Drink plenty of water to keep your body hydrated.
  • Take it easy and build up your efforts gradually to avoid exhausting yourself further.
  • Move in a controlled environment with plenty of fresh air.
  • Avoid efforts that may interfere with your breathing, such as running in cold air.
  • Stop exercising if you feel dizzy or light-headed.
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water to avoid spreading the cold.

Sick but still exercising?

Exercising with a cold can be tough, but it’s not impossible. Sometimes exercising is just the right thing to do. However, do you have the flu? Then it is often better to skip a workout. If you have been exercising, your immune system goes to work to help your body recover. But you need this immune system more to recover from the flu.

To decide whether you can exercise or not, you can do the neck check. The neck check is a handy rule of thumb to determine whether your symptoms are too severe to exercise or not. Do you only have symptoms above the neck? A headache, sore throat or runny nose? Then, as a rule, you can exercise. If you have complaints below the neck, such as shortness of breath, then it is not recommended. Also, with a fever, it is anything but convenient.

Too much of a good thing

Sometimes you exercise a lot, but don’t feel fit. How can that be! Recovering after your workout is a small drain on your immune system. If you don’t give your body enough rest, it can become overloaded. You will then feel tired quickly, suffer a lot of muscle pain and may even get sick. In this case, listen carefully to your body. Working out too much can slow down your progression. If you get these signals from your body, temporarily reduce your training intensity.

Do the symptoms go away by themselves? Then you are on the right track. It may be a good idea to create a training schedule tailored to your needs. That way you can be sure that you are not training too much, but also not too little. For example, by following an Active recovery workout instead of an Advanced Interval class.

Return to exercise after flu

Even if you have been sick for a long time, indoor cycling is a great way to start exercising again. You can start at any level. If you have been sick for a long time, your fitness is often not what you were used to. Indoor cycling is ideal to slowly build it back up. If you are very tired after your workout, just take a shower or go to bed. It is good to give your body some exercise. In this way, your immune system will be activated, and you will recover faster from your illness.

Exercising after Covid

Patients recovering from Covid often find that they suffer from shortness of breath. These and other residual symptoms may persist for a long time. In some cases, exercising after illness can help. By quietly building up a good level of fitness, these residual symptoms can disappear. For example, CycleMasters member Marco has had his shortness of breath disappear through Indoor Cycling.

Prevention is better than cure

Exercise is healthy! People who exercise often are sick less often and for less time than people who don’t exercise at all. Therefore, it is good to exercise regularly.

These days, the competition for your free time is greater than ever. Netflix, social media and games are all vying for a spot on your daily schedule. Sports participation is declining more and more. These are, of course, worrying developments. We advise everyone to exercise regularly, not only because it’s healthy, but also because it’s fun!


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