Wearing a mask has become part of our lives. Whether we like it or not, masks are one of the best ways to prevent the spread of the COVID pandemic.
That being said, they can be uncomfortable, especially when working out. Having your mouth and nose covered while exercising can be harder than the exercise itself. The good news is, it won’t hurt you to wear a mask, generally speaking. But there are some things you need to take into account if you plan on working out while wearing a mask.
5. Is Safe to Work Out While Wearing a Mask?
Yes, it is. For most people anyway. Most of us are safe to work out with a mask on and have no issues. There’s been a study that determined there are no significant differences in your heart rate, respiratory rate, or oxygen saturation. This basically means that you can work out with a mask on and not have any physical consequences in the long run.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that you won’t feel anything different when working out. At the end of the day, the flow of air is less than when you’re not wearing a face mask.
4. What Will You Feel If You Exercise with a Mask on?
While wearing a face mask won’t affect your health over time, you might feel some side effects when you’re starting out. Scott McAfee, physical therapist and an orthopedic specialist at MovementX, told CNET you might get tired faster than usual and you might even feel dizzy at first.
This is only temporary, though, and McAffe says that your body will learn to exercise with lower flows of air.
“Over a few weeks, your body will certainly adapt by becoming more efficient at metabolizing oxygen, but this takes time,” McAfee says. “If you start to feel dizzy, imbalanced, or overly fatigued, stop. Be smart [and] don’t over do it.”
Even though feeling strange at first is normal, you need to listen to your body and don’t push yourself too hard. Even if you’re regularly a fit person, you should feel more fatigued than usual just by doing regular exercises. This is normal and you can keep working out like usual.
That being said, if you’re feeling more than a slight discomfort, dizziness, headache, or you’re too fatigued, take a break or stop working out altogether. Try to monitor your workouts and listen to what your body is trying to tell you. And if you’re constantly feeling that way, it’s best if you contact your doctor or seek medical help immediately.