Olympian Lea Davison shares how her routine has changed and what tips and tricks she’s using to try and stay well while staying active.
First off, I’d like to extend a huge thank you to the essential workers that are keeping our world turning during this global pandemic, health care professionals, grocery store workers, mail systems, and workers in our food systems. These people are putting themselves in harm’s way for the better of society and they deserve a lot of support and huge applause. They are our new super heroes.
Staying healthy right now is the highest priority for everyone. The most important way to combat CO-VID 19 (since there simply isn’t a vaccine for it) is to avoid getting exposed. So, follow the CDC and WHO guidelines, stay home, social distance (this means solo bike rides or whomever is your housemate. 6 feet plus away from each other), wash those hands, and don’t touch your face. Also, here are the extra steps that I am taking to avoid exposure.
- Staying Home: I am not going to the store. When I need something, we’re lucky that our local general store does curbside pick up. When I bring home food and supplies, I disinfect with Lysol wipes outside before bringing into my house. I also wash and scrub fruit and vegetables with hot water.
- Social Distance: For me, this means outside solo adventures or with my wife, Frazier. When I come across another cyclist or walker, I move all the way towards the center yellow line.
- Mail: Think about how many mailboxes the postman (or lady) has touched. I disinfect our mailbox before checking the mail. Although they say the virus is unlikely to live on cardboard and other items through shipping, we open our packages outside and put the packaging immediately in the recycling. We disinfect all items before bring them inside.
Okay now onto the fun stuff! As a professional athlete, staying healthy is at a premium. When I get sick, training is disrupted and races could be missed. It could have the potential to have a negative effect on the whole season. Plus, we travel A LOT on the planes (the germ bus in the sky!) so I have a lot of tricks to keep me healthy throughout the season. You can use these to prevent sickness or put yourself in the best situation in case you do get sick.
- Sleep: Getting consistent, quality sleep is the most important part of the equation in terms of recovering from workouts and revving up your immune system. I take Nuun Rest tablets at night to wind myself down as well as wear blue light blocking glasses, so the artificial light of screens doesn’t mess up my circadian rhythm. I try to go to bed at the same time each night so my body can expect it. When I can, I sleep with my cell phone in a completely different room.
- Nuun Immunity: I take Nuun Immunity on the daily to give myself the essential vitamins to combat anything that comes through. Plus, this keeps me hydrated and flushes out anything potentially bad from your body.
- Raw garlic or ginger shots: If I’m starting to get a sore throat, I deploy a lot of tactics to nip this in the bud. I’ve found that raw garlic is the best natural remedy. I dice a couple of garlic cloves, drizzle olive oil over it, add a pinch of salt, and dip bread in it. It’s way more palatable than just taking garlic straight up. I also get a straight up juiced ginger from a health food store. This will burn going down, but I feel like it kills anything on its way down. Plus, it’s an anti-inflammatory, so that’s an extra bonus.
- Netty Pot: I make a saline solution with distilled water and table salt and use a netty pot to flush it through my nose if I feel sickness creeping up or I have nasal congestion. This helps clear everything out. Or you can go surfing in the ocean which is nature’s netty pot. That’s the most fun way to netty pot.
- Zinc: Only in the early days of a cold or sickness, I take zinc tablets (cold eeze or zicam) frequently. I have heard zinc is not as effective once a cold settles into your body.
- Rest: Now is not the time to keep pushing. Sometimes if we push through a workout with a sore throat, we are just making sure that we get sick. If we really workout hard during a cold, you are just elongating the time that you are sick. Your body is trying to tell you something. You are tired and you need to rest. Think of it as a recovery period and a time to catch up on those Netflix episodes. A light walk outside or light exercise in the sunshine and fresh air is recommended!
Everyone stay healthy and please do your part to keep our communities at large healthy. Thank you.