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Mono nucleusowhatty...

ok, so i am a 17 year old cross country runner and i found out from my doctor two days ago that i have mono. Well my doctor said i could keep training if i got enough rest, and i am starting a weight training program this winter, to get to my question, is it a bad idea to start a new strength program while with my current ailment? Thanks for the help

I am 23 and just got over mono. It knocked me out for basically 4 months. I lost a lot of my weight and strength that I had spent 6 months or so gaining. Anyways, my problem was my liver – make sure your liver is ok before you really start doing a lot. My liver enzymes were high from the mono, and it really limited the amount of strain that I could put on my body. Also, some people experience chronic fatigue for months before getting better. There are different versions of mono. Some get bad fatigue where others have a BAD fever for 10-14 days (I had the fever & not the fatigue). Just make sure the Dr. says you can lift weights before you do. I got really impatient and wanted to lift BAD, but it’s not worth risking ones health, especially when we are young :). Good luck…

do as little physical activity as possible for the next week. sleep as much as possible, i would stretch every day but that is about it. drink lots of fluids and eat healthy. ease back into training the following week. taking it slow so you can heal completely is what is most important. even if you have to take a whole month off, it’s better that getting seriously sick and missing your entire spring season.

When your doctor told you that you could “keep training”, was he referring to you running or lifting? You might want to clarify that with him if you’re not sure. I got mono when I was 21 (nice “break-up present” from a girlfriend, I believe), and while it wasn’t bad enough to hospitalize me, my life sure sucked for about 4 months. I didn’t know I had it for the first two months or so; I thought I was having difficulties with allergies or something, since workouts were completely and utterly exhausting me. Once I found out I had mono, though, I stopped lifting for 2 or 3 months under the directions of my doctor. He said to take it easy, especially when recovering, as not allowing enough time to recover could eventually lead to a chronic case of mono. I would suggest taking the time off from working out of any kind (it’s amazing what else you can get done without worrying about your diet and training), but I don’t know the demands upon you to keep training. Just my 2 cents.

Bad idea to start a new strength training program with mono? Definitely. Put all your efforts into kicking the illness ass before you find it kicking your own. My biggest mistake was trying to train when I was sick, and I think it compounded the problem ten fold. Your not going to get great results with an illness anyway - so rest, take it easy and then regroup when you have it beaten.

Do a ‘neck check.’ If your symptoms are above the neck only, it’s ok to workout. You might want to concentrate on singles and heavy lifting (heavy lifting may be lighter when you’re sick), with short workout durations. I wouldn’t advise running, as you may be sacrificing immune function (short term) that could cause you problems. Make sure you overcompensate in your diet (more is better), and never completely exhaust yourself. Basically, you can maintain your muscle and strength, but don’t try to reach new heights.

I had mono this past Winter, and being the stubborn bastard I am, I started back training after only five days off. Needless to say, many of the syptoms hung around for wayyyy to long, and this was probably a result of not letting myself get back to 100% before training again. I would definitely make sure I was 100% before even thinking about stepping into a gym or running. Do your best to keep putting food away for the duration of the illness, and you shouldn’t lose much in the way of size or strength.

what is mono???

Word on the street is, you catch mono from someone else on account of your weakened immune system (from training). Considering how hard I trained and how little I ate when I was 18, and how hard I partied (shared too many drinks and too much spit), when I got mono it sort of made sense. Take it easy, sleep, stay warm, eat more. Don’t train until you recover.

Infectious Mononucleosis is a viral disease caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. It is transmitted primarily through saliva exchange where it enters the cells of the throat or nose of a new host. This is why it is often called the “kissing disease”.
The virus specifically infects cells of your immune system called B cells. This in turn leads to an increase in specialized white blod cells which are responsible for killing the infected B cells. This manifests symptoms of swollen lymph glands, spleen and liver, sore throat, and fever. The most common symptom is chronic fatigue (constant tiredness). This is because your immune system is having a “civil war” with itself and using a great deal of your energy just to fight off the virus.
People most at risk for mono are adolescents and adults. Children who acquire the virus usually show no symptoms. Immunocompromised people are at the greatest risk for developing more life-threatening forms of the disease.
Symptoms typically last for about six weeks, but you may feel tired or depressed for several months afterwards.
As with other viral diseases, there is no effective anti-viral medication you can take. Your best bet is to avoid working out for a minimum of 4-6 weeks. this will enable your body to devote all available resouces to fighting off the disease. There is no need to expose your body to additional stress (ie weight training, cardio etc.) until symptoms have subsided. You will also harbor the virus for the rest of your life (don’t worry, 9 out of 10 people carry the virus and are asymptomatic). Recurrence of the disease may involve a low-grade fever,headache, and sore throat.
Mono is a serious disease that shouldn’t be dealt with lightly. You need to be patient and allow your body to heal. I know taking a few weeks off from the gym feels like an eternity, but when viewed in perspective of your whole life it is really a short time. Hope this helps.

thanks for all the help --i decided not to do weights, but i am still running (lighter milage than i would have though) --i am just trying to maintain fitness and not run any personal bests.