CAN YOU EXERCISE AFTER TAKING A COVID-19 VACCINE?
Whichever side of the vaccine divide you’re on, you would have heard or read about the potential side effects that authorised Covid-19 vaccines like Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca can bring. Headaches, fever, nausea, fatigue, and sore arms are among the most commonly reported aftermath, especially among the younger population. The jury is still out as to why the older population are experiencing less of those symptoms but in most cases, the effects are mild and don’t last more than a few days.
Listen To Your BodyThere is no fixed answer to that question – you’re the only one who can decide. Listen to your body. Is it telling you it needs to rest, or is it raring to go? Or maybe it’s saying let’s scale it back a little and go gentle for a few days. Remember that rest and recovery are part of an effective training process, so don’t feel bad about missing a day or two. Forcing yourself to exercise while your body is protesting could backfire as there is a higher risk of injury. You also won’t be able to perform as well as you usually do.
Relieve Arm SorenessMost people who have gotten the vaccine report soreness in the arm or tenderness around the area where the jab was made. This is because the vaccine is injected into the deltoid muscle, causing tiny tears that can lead to inflammation and hence the mild pain around the area. To mitigate this, treat it as you would when you have a sore muscle: Stretch it out or do arm circles. You want to improve blood flow to the area so as to bring down the soreness. Here are more arm exercises you can do.
Alternative WorkoutsIf your arm remains sore a few days afterwards or you find that it generally feels weaker, that doesn’t mean you have to give up exercising completely. Give your arm a rest and focus on the other parts of your body instead. Switch up your usual routine and bring forward Leg Day, Glutes Day, Core Day…you get the drift. It might also be helpful to do workouts that are designed to relax the body, such as yoga. Fitness First offers a number of yoga classes that involve gentle stretches, postures and poses that focus on breathing to calm the mind. That could be just what you need to help your body recover from the side effects.
Ultimately, the question of whether or not you should exercise after taking a Covid-19 vaccine can only be answered by you. Observe your body, take note of any discomfort or pain, and gauge how well you feel. If you think you’ll be better off working up a sweat, go for it. Don’t think you can handle the usual intensity of your workouts? Then scale it back. Whatever the case may be, remember that it takes time for the vaccine to kick into effect so it’s important to keep up with health precautions such as masking, using hand sanitizers, and maintaining your distance.
Note: This blog offers health, fitness and nutritional information for educational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute, nor does it replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Consult a physician before starting any exercise programmes or changing your diet.