Should I Train If I Have The Flu?

As humans, it is part of our lives to get the flu at times. Some of us may be once for the year, some maybe twice or even more than twice. Although we do not like it, it is normal to get the flu now and then. But the big question is, “Should I go to the gym if I have the flu?


First of all it is important to understand the severity of the flu. If you have a fever whether a very high one or relatively low one, if you have nasal congestion, a sore throat and even a cough. I do not recommend going to the gym. The only thing you will be doing working yourself to death.

A fever is simply a short term increase in body temperature in which is used to help your body fight off illnesses.So this is a normal response by the body when you catch the flu. But the thing is the temperature at which the body works at its best is 37 degrees Celsius.

The body consists of various hormones and proteins that maintain regular body functions and they work at their best at 37 degrees,so when our body temperature gets elevated, they can’t function at their best, so that explains why our appetite drop when we are sick.

Because the proteins that assist in digesting foods are not functioning well at the high temperature.

I personally remembered a long time ago I got the flu and I had fever and everything, I did some heavy leg press. After the first set I fl like my head was spinning, I felt dizzy and weak. It was the worst feeling ever.

First of all I never like when I am sick because I my body feels weak because I don’t eat properly and I just feel to lay in bed all day and secondly I hate missing the gym or I hate not giving it my best because I have something that’s holding me back.

But understand it from this perspective, when your body is sick it simply wants to rest and recover. The more rest it has the more the body can use energy to recover and get rid of the flu.

If you go to the gym and you lift really heavy weights the body will have to use up the energy to move the really heavy weight and also it will have to use energy for it to recover.

This means there will be less energy for the body to recover and you will take longer to recover. For example, it’s like cutting an apple in half and throwing away the other half, you get less nutrients from the apple.

Same with your body’s energy.You will have very little energy to recover if you use up a lot doing strenuous exercises! The human body is built to recover but it must be provided with the right conditions.

What I recommend if you have a fever and a really bad cough and cold, I say that you should stay at home from the gym for a day or two.It is better to let the body rest and recover and try and get some sleep as well because that’s when the body repairs itself best.

As the fever is over you can then go back to the gym. You may still have a cold and a cough so I recommend taking a few light days at the gym until your body is back to 100%.

Light days will require less energy so the body is still able to have more energy to recover. So when I have the flu I would train about 60% of my 1 rep max for compound lifts,( 1rep max is a weight you can only get 1 rep on ofcourse), and I would do some light weight for isolations as well.

When the cough and cold subsides and you feel better physically and mentally, you can ‘beast out’ on those weights again!



1) Drink Ginger Tea – Ginger works wonders especially when you’re sick. It helps with the sore throat and helps to reduce the fever as well. It also helps to boost the immune system which will help the body get rid of the flu as well.

I see a lot of people have the ready made ginger tea that they buy but these do not have enough ginger in the tea bags to help fight the cold. You want to get the natural ginger.

I grind up the ginger and I put it in a cup of hot water and drink that. It works wonders for the flu. You can also eat garlic, that also helps with the sore throat and the flu.

2) Take regular baths – Normally when you have the fever and you take a bath you tend to notice that the fever goes away for a while so this can help you to control your fever as well.

3)Take medications– Medications tend to reduce the side effects on the flu and help you to feel better as your body is fighting the flu. It also helps your body to fight the flu as well. You can use medications like Tylenol and Advil or even NyQuil to help you sleep at night.


4)Avoid the AC-Some germs and  bacteria favours cold conditions and tend to multiply in them.Have you ever slept with a sore throat and woke up with a worse one? That’s the reason why because the bacteria in your body has a cold environment to dwell in and if you are like me I hate a sore throat it’s the worst thing ever. Try to sleep at room temperature.

5)Get Rest – When you are sick your body just wants to use its energy to recover and it needs rest to recover. You should try to get as much sleep as possible and try not to be on your phone too much or watch a lot of television that is still taking up your energy. Just lay down and rest and take deep breaths.

6) Train Lightly– When you are sick try to keep the weights light until you feel better. Sometimes when I am sick I go for a light jog and I tend to feel a lot better so maybe you can do that as well. Whatever you do, don’t exert yourself too much. But if you are really sick I recommend you rest.

Thanks for reading guys and I hope this helps you whenever you catch the flu hope it helps you to a fast recovery!

6 thoughts on “Should I Train If I Have The Flu?”

  1. I agree that if you are sick or having a flu then it is better to stay away from strenious activitoes at the gym. I would rather consider walking and have some fresh air than going at the gym. Another thing to consider is lsiten to your body. Having flu, fever, etc means your body needs rest. It needed time to recover and conserve energy. 

    Thanks for sharing this article am sure there are more readdrs who can relaye about it.

  2. Great article. Full of wisdom and advice. I agree. When you have fever, just do yourself a great favor. Stop and rest. Stay at home. I like that you included ginger tea in your recommendation while on the road to fever recovery. I love ginger teas and they really do wonders.

  3. I agree with  you 100%…stay away from the gym and get plenty of rest.  It’s really critical that the body has a chance to recover before expending a lot of energy working out.  Your prescription for plenty of rest, ginger tea, regular baths, etc are exactly what the body need to help it recover.

    Also, there is the very real possibility that  you could certainly spread you flu germs around the gym and that would certainly not be in the best interests of those other members who are basically healthy.  The gym is a breeding ground for many germs including the flu.

    Thanks for the  great article and the suggested ways to fight off the flu.  All the best. 

  4. The first image in your post is so how you feel when you have flu. Would you say I should train if I have a cold? Or would it then progress to a flu? Also, maybe if I take a good care of myself and drink some ginger tea with lemon, take baths and rest well the cold will go away and I’ll be fine? I’m asking this because I rarely get the flu, but have cold 2 – 3 times a year, and I wonder every time,  should I or should I not go to the gym.



    1. Good question! This post is actually targeted for people who have the flu. So you know the flu may be associated with a high fever and headaches and even sore throats for example like your body feels very beaten up. Like if you are feeling like this I would urge you to stay at home and rest. But if you have the cold you can still attend the gym but I suggest you listen to your body when you do so. If you have the cold and you are hitting the weights I recommend keeping the weights on the lighter side until you recover but at the same time listen to your own body. Good question though! 🙂

  5. When I first started reading I thought you were going to say ‘Yeah keep going to the gym, work through it” That used to be a attitude not that many years ago. It’s refreshing for that ‘stigma’ to be dismissed here. Sometimes you just have to go with it. You absolutely right about needing to rest, it is the bodies best way of recovering. Fluids, nutrients and rest all good advice. I never realised Ginger was such a good remedy, I could have done with some earlier this year when I was laid up for a week. It just drains you and makes you frustrated which doesn’t help the situation.

    Not a bad idea to give the gym a few days rest as you wouldn’t want to pass it onto other members, they wouldn’t thank you for that. Is it even contagious I wonder ? I’m not sure. Take some days off and when you go back don’t expect to be hitting your best straight away. All in good time.

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