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Thu Jun 12, 2008 9:58 am

I always get severe hay fever - grass pollen allergy - around this time of year. It will last up to mid-July (Stockholm, Sweden). Hay fever is a ridiculous ailment but it does leave me very weak and certainly affects my running just now. Anti-histamine tablets help the hay fever but make me even more tired. Eye drops are better because they do not make me so tired.

Are there any other masters athletes whose grass pollen allergy affects their running? What do you do?

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Thu Jun 12, 2008 8:48 pm

Master Masters Athlete
Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 8:03 pm
Posts: 54

One of the guys on our team wears a mask that covers his nose and mouth. Of course we wanted to know why. He said he couldn't be out at the track unless he wore it, as his allergies are so bad. He said it took a bit to get used to and was like training at altitude, hard to breathe. He said he thinks it makes his lungs stronger as well as allowing him to train when the pollen is really bad.

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Fri Jun 13, 2008 3:04 am

Master Masters Athlete
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 8:24 am
Posts: 202
Location: Utrecht (Netherlands)

I had very severe hay fever but it is very long ago that every athletic meet ended in running eyes and nose. I had a desensibilisation cure in winter, about 1974, but that helped nothing. Next winter I had a different cure. Every injection leaded to several hours of severe uriticaria all over my body. But the cure worked, I have never had hay fever since than!

regards, Weia

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Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:40 pm

Master Masters Athlete
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Joined: Thu Sep 07, 2006 6:11 am
Posts: 83
Location: Massachusetts

trees, grass, dust - you name it - I am allergic to it. The worst time of year for me is the spring when the trees and grass pollens are out in force. I take a prescription allergy medication which does not make me sleepy, and because I have exercise-induced asthma - I use medication for that and an inhaler as well (yes I file with WMA for permission to use the asthma inhaler). Sometimes it just does not matter what I use - it is bad. I use to kid myself that running when congested and reacting to heavy pollen made my lungs stronger - but it is not true. it just makes me feel sluggish and difficult to breath. Best thing to do - run either early in the morning or in the evening when the pollen is less or wait until it has rained and cleaned the air some. My times are slow, and if I have a track meet - well - just "carry on" and do the best that I can given the circumstances.
For me a mask just makes it harder to suck the oxygen out of the air. I had shots years ago and that helped. But when the pollen count is high - it is difficult to train.
Compared with years ago the medication available is much better but still I have times when it is just pretty tough to train well. If your allergy medication makes you sleepy - look for one that does not - they are on the market in the US - no clue about Sweden or other parts of Europe.

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