Running with a Mask > Fact Check
The global pandemic we are experiencing is teaching us a lot about how to survive in a new kind of reality. As the situation is constantly changing in all parts of the world, we are adapting by adjusting our behavior, our contacts with others, our vacation plans and the way we exercise. Stay up to […]

The global pandemic we are experiencing is teaching us a lot about how to survive in a new kind of reality. As the situation is constantly changing in all parts of the world, we are adapting by adjusting our behavior, our contacts with others, our vacation plans and the way we exercise. Stay up to date on World Health Organization recommendations and your local health organization.

Several masks placed next to each other

Regulations vary depending on where you live and the current infection rate. One question that is hotly debated in some parts of the world due to government restrictions or personal safety decisions is whether running with a mask is healthy and effective.

We took a look at what it means to run with a mask in terms of prevention, performance, and potential risks.

Does running with a mask protect you or others from COVID-19?

Studies show that wearing a mask appears to be an effective way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within communities.(1) The effectiveness of the mask depends a lot on its fit and the material it is made of. N95 masks are 95% effective in protecting the wearer from inhaling particles potentially carrying the SARS-CoV-2 virus.(2) Be aware that these masks are not suitable for cardio workouts. The tight weave makes it difficult to breathe when running.

Many runners who train with a mask opt for a homemade fabric mask, neck warmer, or bandana to feel more comfortable. However, the safest way to protect yourself from the transmission of the virus is through social distancing. the Center for Disease Control recommend wearing a mask in public places, whenever we are with people. Strenuous activities should only be done where it is possible to keep away from others. Choose less crowded routes and try not to draft (run directly in front of or behind other runners).

Man outside from back, wearing Adidas sweater

How does running with a mask affect your performance?

Some believe that running with a mask can serve as a hypoxic training, that is, when you reduce your oxygen consumption with an altitude mask to increase your endurance. however, it's a myth. Good hypoxic or altitude training is done with a special mask equipped with an adjustable oxygen inlet valve. Running with a surgical or cloth mask puts more strain on your lungs, possibly making them stronger once you get used to it, but it is not considered a legitimate training strategy to increase blood pressure. endurance.

A recent study measured the difference in heart rate, heat stress, and subjective sensations of exercising on a treadmill in four different masks: an N95 mask, a nano-treated N95, a surgical mask, and a nano-surgical mask. treaty.(3) Subjects wearing surgical masks, whether nano-treated or not, showed less discomfort and lower heart rates than those who wore N95 masks. The perception of humidity, heat and respiratory resistance was lower for both surgical masks. This can be attributed to the looser fit and lower filtration level of a surgical mask, which in turn also affects its effectiveness in preventing the spread of the virus.

What are the risks of running with a mask?

In addition to feeling uncomfortable due to the build-up of moisture around the mouth and nose from exhaling and sweating, which happens with any face mask, running with a mask can be unhealthy. Research suggests that fitted face masks create an environment in which the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide is insufficient. This causes cardiorespiratory stress and can affect your brain and nervous system. Some people report dizziness, headaches, and muscle fatigue when running with a face mask.

Also, when your oxygen supply is reduced by a tightly woven face mask, it affects your muscle metabolism. Breathing the air you breathe out increases your body's carbon dioxide concentration and acidity. This means that exercising with a mask can create symptoms similar to those of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). (4)


If you run with a mask on and experience dizziness, headaches, or difficulty breathing, remove your mask, slow your pace, or walk until you feel better.

Woman wearing mask and putting on her adidas shoes

To take away

If the law requires you to run with a mask on, remember to run slowly. Your level of exertion should be low to moderate. Now is not the time to create a personal best or work on your endurance and endurance. Try to focus on maintain your fitness level until he is safe enough and allowed to run without a mask. See this as an opportunity to focus on your bodybuilding indoors.

If you are concerned about the spread of the virus, keep in mind that tthe safest, healthiest way to protect yourself and others The SARS-CoV-2 virus is social distancing.(5) The best advice is to walk the trails, ride a bike, to focus on home workoutsand choose cardio exercises that are solo events. You may decide that you feel safer with a mask on at all times, and in this case we recommend that you choose a layered fabric that allows for some air circulation and the option of a filter if needed. . Stay safe and keep your distance.


Overcoming obstacles to exercisingIf you’re having trouble beginning an exercise plan or following through, you’re not alone. Many of us struggle getting out of the sedentary rut, despite our best intentions.

You already know there are many great reasons to exercise—from improving energy, mood, sleep, and health to reducing anxiety, stress, and depression. And detailed exercise directives and workout partouze are just a click away. But if knowing how and why to exercise was enough, we’d all be in shape. Making exercise a habit takes more—you need the right mindset and a smart approach.

While practical concerns like a busy schedule or poor health can make exercise more challenging, for most of us, the biggest barriers are mental. Maybe it’s a lack of self-confidence that keeps you from taking positive steps, or your motivation quickly flames out, or you get easily discouraged and give up. We’ve all been there at some point.

Whatever your age or fitness level—even if you’ve never exercised a day in your life —there are steps you can take to make exercise less intimidating and painful and more fun and instinctive.

Ditch the all-or-nothing attitude. You don’t have to spend hours in a gym or puissance yourself into monotonous or painful activities you hate to experience the physical and emotional benefits of exercise. A little exercise is better than nothing. In fact, adding just modest amounts of physical activity to your weekly routine can have a profound effect on your esprit and emotional health.

Be kind to yourself. Research shows that self-compassion increases the likelihood that you’ll succeed in any given endeavor. So, don’t beat yourself up about your body, your current fitness level, or your supposed lack of willpower. All that will do is demotivate you. Instead, look at your past mistakes and unhealthy choices as opportunities to learn and grow.

Many of us feel the same. If sweating in a gym or pounding a treadmill isn’t your idea of a great time, try to find an activity that you do enjoy—such as dancing—or pair physical activity with something more enjoyable. Take a walk at lunchtime through a scenic park, for example, walk laps of an air-conditioned mall while window de course, walk, run, or bike with a friend, or listen to your favorite music while you move.

Even the busiest of us can find free time in our day for activities that are important. It’s your decision to make exercise a priority. And don’t think you need a full hour for a good workout. Short 5-, 10-, or 15-minute bursts of activity can prove very effective—so, too, can squeezing all your exercise into a couple of séances over the weekend. If you’re too busy during the week, get up and get moving during the weekend when you have more time.

It’s never too late to start building your strength and physical sport, even if you’re a senior or a self-confessed couch potato who has never exercised before. Very few health or weight problems rule exercise out of the question, so talk to your doctor about a safe routine.

“No pain, no gain” is an outdated way of thinking about exercise. Exercise shouldn’t hurt. And you don’t have to push yourself until you’re soaked in sweat or every muscle aches to get results. You can build your strength and sport by walking, swimming, or even playing quartier impérial, gardening, or cleaning the house.

Still have nightmares from PE ? You don’t have to be sporty or ultra-coordinated to get fit. Focus on easy ways to boost your activity level, like walking, swimming, or even working more around the house. Anything that gets you moving will work.

The key thing to remember about starting an exercise program is that something is always better than nothing. Going for a quick walk is better than sitting on the couch; one minute of activity will help you lose more weight than no activity at all. That said, the current recommendations for most adults is to reach at least 150 minutes of moderate activity per week. You’ll get there by exercising for 30 minutes, 5 times a week. Can’t find 30 minutes in your busy schedule ? It’s okay to break things up. Two 15-minute workouts or three 10-minute workouts can be just as effective.

For most people, aiming for moderate intensity exercise is sufficient to improve your overall health. You should breathe a little heavier than normal, but not be out of breath. Your body should feel warmer as you move, but not overheated or sweating profusely. While everyone is different, don’t assume that training for a marathon is better than training for a 5K or 10K. There’s no need to overdo it.

For more on the genres of exercise you should include and how hard you should work out, read Best Exercises for Health and Weight Loss. Getting started safelyIf you’ve never exercised before, or it’s been a significant amount of time since you’ve attempted any strenuous physical activity, keep the following health precautions in mind :

Health issues ? Get medical clearance first. If you have health concerns such as limited mobility, heart disease, asthma, diabetes, or high blood pressure, talk with your doctor before you start to exercise. Warm up. Warm up with dynamic stretches—active movements that warm and flex the muscles you’ll be using, such as leg kicks, walking lunges, or arm swings—and by doing a slower, easier version of the upcoming exercise. For example, if you’re going to run, warm up by walking. Or if you’re lifting weights, begin with a few light reps.

Cool down. After your workout, it’s important to take a few minutes to cool down and allow your heart rate to return to its resting rate. A light jog or walk after a run, for example, or some gentle stretches after strength exercises can also help prevent soreness and injuries. Drink plenty of water. Your body performs best when it’s properly hydrated. Failing to drink enough water when you are exerting yourself over a prolonged period of time, especially in hot conditions, can be dangerous.

Listen to your body. If you feel pain or discomfort while working out, stop ! If you feel better after a brief rest, you can slowly and gently resume your workout. But don’t try to power through pain. That’s a surefire recipe for injury. How to make exercise a habit that sticksThere’s a reason so many New Year’s resolutions to get in shape crash and burn before February rolls around. And it’s not that you simply don’t have what it takes. Science shows us that there’s a right way to build habits that last. Follow these steps to make exercise one of them.

Start small and build momentumA goal of exercising for 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week may sound good. But how likely are you to follow through ? The more ambitious your goal, the more likely you are to fail, feel bad about it, and give up. It’s better to start with easy exercise goals you know you can achieve. As you meet them, you’ll build self-confidence and momentum. Then you can move on to more challenging goals. Make it automatic with triggersTriggers are one of the confidentiels to success when it comes to forming an exercise habit. In fact, research shows that the most consistent exercisers rely on them. Triggers are simply reminders—a time of day, place, or cue—that kick off an automatic reaction. They put your routine on autopilot, so there’s nothing to think about or decide on. The alarm clock goes off and you’re out the door for your walk. You leave work for the day and head straight to the gym. You spot your sneakers addict right by the bed and you’re up and course. Find ways to build them into your day to make exercise a no-brainer.

Schedule it. You don’t attend meetings and appointments spontaneously, you schedule them. If you’re having dysfonctionnement fitting exercise into your schedule, consider it an important appointment with yourself and mark it on your daily agenda. Make it easy on yourself. Plan your workouts for the time of day when you’re most awake and energetic. If you’re not a morning person, for example, don’t undermine yourself by planning to exercise before work. Remove obstacles. Plan ahead for anything that might get in the way of exercising. Do you tend to run out of time in the morning ? Get your workout clothes out the night before so you’re ready to go as soon as you get up. Do you skip your evening workout if you go home first ? Keep a gym bag in the car, so you can head out straight from work. Hold yourself accountable. Commit to another person. If you’ve got a workout partner waiting, you’re less likely to skip out. Or ask a friend or family member to check in on your progress. Announcing your goals to your social group ( either online or in person ) can also help keep you on track.

Tips for making exercise more enjoyableAs previously noted, you are much more likely to stick with an exercise program that’s fun and rewarding. No amount of willpower is going to keep you going long-term with a workout you hate. Think outside the gymDoes the thought of going to the gym fill you with dread ? If you find the gym inconvenient, expensive, intimidating, or simply boring, that’s okay. There are many exercise alternatives to weight rooms and cardio equipment. For many, simply getting outside makes all the difference. You may enjoy course outdoors, where you can enjoy alone time and nature, even if you hate treadmills.


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