Exercising with rosacea can be something of a challenge.
You know it’s important to keep physically active for good health and stress control but getting sweaty, hot and bothered from agressive workouts can trigger a flare up of your rosacea symptoms.
For this reason – some people with rosacea avoid aerobic exercise altogether. You really don’t need to – here’s some great tips to make sure you get the exercise you need AND keep your rosacea under control:
1. Exercise in moderate temperatures to prevent overheating or chilling. In winter, you can schedule your exercise time for midday, when it’s the warmest. In summer, try to exercise in early morning, or after it cools down in the evening.
2. Don’t exercise if you’re stressed – a heavy workout can aggravate your rosacea. Try a fifteen minute walk instead, or some activity you greatly enjoy. A positive, uplifting exercise experience will help you reduce stress instead of increasing it – great for controlling your rosacea symptoms.
3. Wash your face thoroughly before exercising – it keeps your skin cool and prevents a film of oil from blocking your pores – important if your rosacea is the type prone to breakouts.
4. Try swimming – a chlorinated pool kills any microbes that can make your rosacea symptoms worse. Because swimming pools are usually cooler than your body, swimming will reduce your overall body temperature and keep it cool while you take your exercise.
5. Don’t overdo it – break up a long workout session into smaller sessions to keep yourself from becoming overly warm or tired. A one hour workout become two half hour sessions or four fifteen minute sessions.
6. Drink a lot of water – you should be doing this anyway as part of your rosacea care plan – but during exercise you need to increase your water intake for the sake of your skin.
7. Cool off with a chilled towel – keep an ice pack or freezer block in your exercise bag so you can have a chilled towel whenever you need it while exercising. Blot and dab with the towel to cool the skin and absorb moisture. If you wipe or scrub your face, you can irritate the skin, promoting flushing and sensitivity.
8. Take in lots of oxygen – make sure you are breathing correctly and taking in oxygen. This prevents skin reddening and helps relieve rosacea symptoms during exercise. If you hold your breath the blood vessels in your face dilate and your face will flush.
9. Use fresh towels – old towels can have skin oils and bacteria trapped in them, which can irritate your skin – if you get acne like breakouts with your rosacea you have to be strict about cleanliness. Remember not to use soaps in the shower – many soaps cause the pores to shrink and as pores tighten, they can trap oils inside the skin which may trigger a flare-up of your rosacea.
10. Stop when you’re hot – if a workout is making you hot and stressed, stop and take a break or have a cool shower. The benefits of exercise are helpful in reducing your rosacea symptoms but overworking yourself can – cause skin irritation and redness. Stay cool and collected during your workout, and your skin will do the same.
There’s no need to give up on your exercise just because you have rosacea. Keep to these simple rules and you should be able to enjoy all the health and beauty benefits of aerobic exercise without triggering a flare up.