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If you were sick with COVID-19, but now that you’re starting to feel better, you might be wondering, When can I run after recovering from COVID-19? Typically, this varies per runner and depends on several factors.

It is important that runners get back into their training program slowly and with self-awareness of how their bodies are reacting. Walking for a few days, then starting short, low-intensity runs of just a few kilometers during the first couple of weeks is a good idea. It can be dangerous for a recovering COVID-19 patient to jump right into running again.

How soon can I get back into training?

Runners with mild COVID-19 symptoms may be able to start training as soon as two weeks after their first negative COVID-19 test and when they are completely symptom-free. Well-conditioned runners can start running again within four weeks of a full recovery. Most should be able to train in about one month.

Distance walking is the safest way to train back into running. We recommended that runners who have recovered from COVID-19 start walking about 2 km and up to 5 km 2 weeks after recovery to reactivate the muscles for running, prevent injury, and test their lungs capacity.

Indications of readiness
  • Lack of symptoms and a negative COVID test.
  • Ability to walk 5km fast with no adverse effects.
  • Normal recovery in the day following the first real run.

Source: Runner’s World

How should I return to running safely?

As returning to exercise and training post-COVID is a challenge, we highly recommend a doctor’s evaluation and recommendation for any post-COVID patients who wish to return to their full activity level, especially intense exercise.

Rehabilitation is what runners can do to ease back to their training. At ACC, the clinic developed a pulmonary rehabilitation program to address essential functions of the lungs and physical abilities. ACC’s pulmonary rehabilitation program will drastically speed up the recovery process of COVID-19 patients and allow them to fully return to their training routine. Even athletes who have not had COVDI-19 can enhance their performance through pulmonary rehabilitation.

If you are recovering from COVID-19, take it slow. Don’t rush. Take time to build your stamina. If there are any strange or lingering symptoms, especially respiratory or cardiovascular, consult with the right doctor without delay so we can help you reach your goals.

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