Is there speedwork an EIA sufferer can do?
I've been asthmatic for 11 years now (I'm 22), but was never a very active teenager. However, within the last 2 months, I have started running pretty seriously. I have a 10km race coming up in the next month, and eventually want to do a marathon next year.
So far I have got up to running between 5 and 8km 4 times a week, during which I have very few problems with my asthma, but I need to try and increase my speed if I'm going to well in my race. I tried fartlekking but suffered a horrible attack after only 1.8km.
So, basically, my question is does anyone know of any speedwork an EIA sufferer can do that won't put too much strain on the lungs?
Thanks in advance,
Warm up really, really well before you try any speed work - that is basically the long and short of it.
A visit to your GP may also be useful to see if you could be offered any other medications to help with EIA, if you've not already done so!
Something like "pyramids" may help - where you gradually build up speed and/or distance in each interval, so you're not outright sprinting to begin with.
I guess it depends how bad your asthma is and what triggers an attack. I've suffered from asthma for about 14 years now but luckily never had an attack from exercise. I take two puffs of ventolin before exercise and then a 1M warm up at easy pace before launching into speedwork. Are you running the speedwork at the right pace ( i.e. not all out sprint). I use McMillan's running caluclator which is on line and I find this a great tool to keep you on the right pace. Make sure you don't skimp on the recovery between efforts as well. However, if you want to be safe may be wise to check it out with your GP or asthma nurse if your surgery has one.
Funnily enough the first training session that induced an asthma attack for me was a pyramid but it was very cold and the cold def. affects my asthma. I now make sure I use my blue puffer before any session I deem to be "hard" so speedwork or a really long run, or if it is very cold out. I also make sure I carry it with me if I am remotely worried.
I certainly do a speedwork or hills session every week despite this.
Ah, but spacers are not just for kids - I have good technique but I use one for my regular meds because spacers improved lung deposition of the drugs so much compared to using an MDI straight into the mouth. If you're taking the drugs, you may as well be making sure they're getting to the right place!
Also, if you're in dire straights, they can help you get the medication to where it's needed without the need for co-ordination/deep breathing.
You may have gathered that I like spacers
Thanks for all your replies, and suggestions. My asthma nurse has just changed me over from salmeterol steroid twice a day to seretide (salmeterol + fluticasone) twice a day plus salbutamol when necessary.On my smaller runs this week my lungs felt fine - although my legs were having none of it!!! - but the proof will be tomorrow on my longer distance!
Does anyone usethe Montelukast Singulair tablets? Are they worth it?
I just came back from an 11km run (1hr09mins - not brilliant but my first ever +10km!!) and had absolutely no problems with my asthma. It was a steady, so I need to try out a shorter, faster run, but my asthma has never been better than this!
And, Basil Brush Mk II, I used my spacer with salbutamol beforehand, which could have been a contributing factor!
It's so nice to talk to other people with EIA, no-one else I know has it!!
Ahhhh, the spacer... never has there been such an underestimated piece of kit
It took me quite a while to figure out how to run with my asthma - that may sound odd, but you really do need to figure out how your lungs react to certain kinds of exercise and how you can work around that. It really is trial and error, even when you understand all the pathophysiology of what's going on. And sometimes I still have a "bad lung run" for no particular reason, but now I just chalk it up to experience and don't overanalyse it too much, unless it's forming part of a bigger pattern which might indicate an infection developing, for example.
Well done on your 11k! When you go for your shorter, faster session, make sure you warm your lungs up slowly before starting the speed work. Fingers crossed for you.
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