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Doctors weigh in on whether to exercise while sick

Wednesday - 2/13/2013, 12:02pm  ET

Weighing in on exercising sick

Kristi King, WTOP reporter

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WASHINGTON - For anyone who has wondered if it's okay to work out when they're feeling under the weather, doctors have an answer: It depends.

It can be dangerous to work out with a fever of 101 degrees or higher, doctors tell Reuters.

"The classic line from every sports medicine doctor is, 'If you can do it, do it. If you can't, don't,'" Dr. Lewis G. Maharam, author of "Running Doc's Guide to Healthy Running" tells Reuters.

Doctors believe people who have a flu or a virus accompanied by fever and or pain need bed rest, not exercise.

Fever can interfere with a body's ability to regulate temperature. If a fever gets too high it can break down proteins in kidneys and liver, Maharam says.

If someone is up for exercise but not feeling 100 percent, Maharam tells Reuters they should avoid working out in group environments such as gyms where germs are easily spread to others.

WTOP's Kristi King contributed to this report.

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