NCAA runner turned high school coach Hillary Kigar has an answer for all things training–no matter what kinds of pollen you’re struggling with during the spring and summer months.
What are your tips for running with seasonal allergies?
If you have seasonal allergies you probably know that newly blooming spring flowers can also mean weeks of sneezing and congestion. But while there’s not much you can do to prevent the pollen in the air, there are a few things you can try to help make sure allergy season doesn’t keep you under house arrest and unable to run. Continue to take any allergy medication that is over-the-counter or prescribed by your doctor, but keep in mind that some of these medications (particularly antihistamines) may make you drowsy and not as alert as you typically would be. Pay closer attention when running on the streets or treadmill and, if possible, opt for the non-drowsy alternative. Additionally, if you are taking allergy medications, be sure to increase your water intake as many of these drugs have dehydrating side effects. Many runners, professional and recreational alike, find it helpful to use a nasal strip while running as it helps pull your nasal passages open. After you have run outside, be sure to take a shower and wash your hair, as often pollen in the air gets trapped in the hair strands, causing more sneezing and congestion even once you are back inside.