QT: Running While Dealing with Seasonal Allergies (Best Of-ish)

This post was originally part of Episode 244 released in October of 2016 and is more or less copy and pasted from that post. The audio, however, is a new take on the topic.

Growing up, I really didn’t suffer from seasonal allergies at all.

But once I moved to Florida for college, I discovered just how miserable seasonal allergies can be.

The Effect of Seasonal Allergies

I don’t know what it is that I’m allergic to, but something down here gets me good in the spring and in the fall.

Or at least, something USED to get me…

My Un-Official Methods for Overcoming My Seasonal Allergies

Let me get this out of the way, I’m not guaranteeing that my methods will work for you.

I know a lot about running injuries, but seasonal allergies… Not so much.

That’s why I consider the following methods to be “un-official”; I think they’ve helped me virtually eliminate my allergy symptoms but I’m not 100% sure.

But I can honestly say that I haven’t had a bad allergy season in the past 3-4 years.

What has changed?

Local Honey

I can’t remember where I heard this from, but this is a tactic that is fairly widely accepted. I don’t know the exact science behind it, but I think the logic is that since you’re ingesting the local pollen (from the same sources as your local allergies) you build up a bit of a resistance/tolerance to the allergens in your area. Some recommend a spoonful of local honey a day when your allergies are at their worst. It may not provide the instant relief you’re looking for, but if it makes the next allergy season more bearable it might be worth it. Not sure where to find sources of local honey? Check out LocalHarvest.org for some options in your area.

Build Up a Tolerance

I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone else talk about this option, but I really think there’s something to it. If you’re rarely exposed to the pollens that impact you most, a little will wreck you. But if you’re consistently exposed to low levels, is there a chance you could build up a resistance? I mean, if the Dread Pirate Roberts can build up a resistance to Iocane Powder, certainly you can do so to pollen right?

Iocane Powder or Seasonal Allergies

Iocane Powder vs Seasonal Allergies

I don’t know if that’s even remotely plausible, but what I do know is this: ever since I started running outside year-round, my allergies have been almost nonexistent. My (possibly flawed) assumption is that I’m basically exposed to low levels of whatever pollen used to bring on a server case of seasonal allergies on an almost daily basis, and over time my body has become less reactive to said pollen. I have no idea if this is the case, but it’s the only explanation that makes sense to me.

When all is said and done, I don’t know why my seasonal allergies are no longer as bad as they used to be, but I’m not complaining!

If this is a rough time of year for you, I’d encourage you to give my two suggestions a shot. I’m not promising they will work, but what have you got to lose?

Struggle w/ spring #running due to seasonal allergies? Relief is possible. #runchat #runnerprobs Share on X

Do You Struggle With Seasonal Allergies? What Do You Do to Get Through the Worst Times of the Year for You?

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