HOURS TO OUTRUN THE COMMON COLD AND SET A NEW PB
SOMETIMES, even scientists get it wrong. For years, the consensus has been that a relentless training schedule can lead to a debilitating case of man flu: run or rep yourself into the ground and your defences will crumble. But myth-busting researchers at the University of Bath have an alternative theory: that endurance exercise actually boosts your immunity. Good news, indeed.
During exercise, the number of infection-fighting T-cells in the blood can increase to 10 times the normal amount. In earlier studies, scientists noted a steep decline of these lymphocytes in the hours following a workout and assumed they were being lost or destroyed – leaving the body open to illness. However, according to the new research, published in Frontiers in Immunology, the cells are simply being relocated to areas more susceptible to infection – your lungs, for example – ready to repel invading pathogens.
Working out for two hours was found to provide the optimal boost to your defences. That means getting ahead of the pack on your halfmarathon plan could be the most effective way to outrun office bugs. The scorching summer weather is no longer an excuse to put your training on ice. So, lace up, limber up and press go.