My new tactic to take on allergy season

It’s that time again.

Allergy season. That means all the usual symptoms and significant fatigue and exercise-induced asthma that make running impossible on many days. I’ll be in this until early or mid-June, and there’s no getting around it.

Usually each year, I expect too much of myself, set myself up for failure and then beat myself up. Which makes me feel much worse, of course. I’d go running too early in the day before the pollens had settled, or I’d not give myself enough of a warmup, or I wouldn’t be flexible enough in my training to allow for the inevitable bad days.

So I’ve got a new tactic this year.

I’ve been working on surrender in the past year, and that’s what I’m trying now. I’ll forgive myself on the days my body just can’t get out there and move. I’ll do what I can do instead, whether it’s going for a walk, bike, swim and run with walk breaks. On the worst days, I can usually manage a short walk.

Today gave me hope this attitude might actually make things better.

Tree pollens were high this morning, and it was warm and windy, which usually means a bad day for me. Even though I was wheezing when I went outside, I relaxed and enjoyed the sun and the smell of spring. After noon, I went for a walk and realized I could breathe fairly well, so I went for my first outdoor bike ride of the season.

It was great! I felt terrible this morning, but I didn’t make myself worse by worrying about what I could or couldn’t do. I know enough by now to realize how much my attitude and emotions can tear me down.

This spring, I’m going to have bad days, but I know I can give myself more good ones.


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