How to Work Out When You Have Exercise-Induced Asthma

Jan 16, 2024
How to Work Out When You Have Exercise-Induced Asthma
Explore expert insights for managing exercise-induced asthma (EIA) in our latest blog. Gain a deeper understanding of EIA, its symptoms, and effective strategies for a seamless fitness journey. 

Breathing should never be a barrier to fitness. If you have exercise-induced asthma (EIA), you’re not alone. 

At A+ Athlete Sports Medicine in Neptune and Robbinsville, New Jersey, Adam Redlich, MD, Adam Thompson, DO, and our team recognize that exercise-induced asthma is a common problem, especially among young athletes. We’re here to offer treatments that improve your overall quality of life and help you maintain an active lifestyle. 

Understanding exercise-induced asthma 

Exercise-induced asthma doesn’t have to interfere with your fitness goals. Let’s break down what it is and how it differs from other types of asthma. EIA is a unique form of asthma ignited by physical activity, with symptoms typically emerging during or post-exercise. It’s essential to differentiate EIA from other asthma types. 

Common symptoms of EIA include shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, and chest tightness. Various triggers, such as exposure to cold or dry air, elevated pollen levels, or intense workouts, can exacerbate EIA symptoms. The key to effective management lies in recognizing and understanding your triggers. 

Strategies for asthma-friendly workouts 

Embrace your fitness journey with these asthma-friendly workout strategies: 

Choose the right environment

Opt for indoor workouts during extreme weather conditions. If you prefer outdoor exercises, aim for environments with milder temperatures and lower humidity. 

Warm up gradually

A gradual warmup helps acclimate your lungs to increased airflow. Start with light exercises before progressing to more intense activities.

Stay hydrated 

Hydration helps mitigate the drying effect of breathing through your mouth during workouts. Drink water before, during, and after exercise. 

Incorporate interval training

Interval training allows for periods of rest between intense bursts of activity, reducing the risk of triggering asthma symptoms. 

Choose asthma-friendly activities 

Consider activities with lower intensity, such as swimming, walking, or biking, which are less likely to trigger EIA. 

The importance of monitoring symptoms

Understanding and monitoring your body’s signals is crucial for effective asthma management during exercise. 

Know your limits 

Pay attention to how your body responds to different activities. If you experience symptoms, adjust the intensity or choose a different exercise. 

Keep a symptom diary 

Maintain a diary to identify patterns and triggers. This information can guide your workout choices and help you manage symptoms proactively. 

Have a rescue plan 

Always have your inhaler on hand. Take necessary precautions, and consult with our team for a personalized action plan. 

In the end, exercise-induced asthma doesn’t have to sideline your fitness aspirations. By understanding your triggers, implementing asthma-friendly strategies, and listening to your body, you can breathe easy and enjoy a fulfilling workout routine. Remember, your fitness journey is unique — find what works best for you and your lungs. 

If you’re ready to learn more, book an appointment at A+ Athlete Sports Medicine online or over the phone today!