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The Guys’ Guy’s Guide to Getting Out From Under the Weather

No one likes getting sick. And I’m one of those people who rarely gets under the weather.

But when I do, I usually come down with a real doozy of whatever ails me. Since I had my two robotic surgeries a year ago, I have not had so much of a cold. In fact I have never felt better in my adult life. That is, until about a week ago…

Recently, I’d noticed that all the kids in my toddler’s daycare group were sneezing, sniffling, or coughing and had runny noses including my little guy. Over time, this—let’s call it a bad cold— worked its way through their system so I forgot about it. Then, early last week I awoke with an inner ear headache and a stuffed up nose. No problem, I told myself. I’ll run it off in Central Park. Bad idea. I ran the 6.2-mile outer loop a bit slower than usual. That night I sipped a vodka drink, which is a rarity for me these days. It knocked me out cold like a hammer. The next day I woke up feeling lousy. I had the chills, an upset stomach, and an achiness behind my eyeballs. Having spent the past week battling this pesky viral demon and only now being steadily on the mend, I thought I’d gift you with some insights on how I deal with getting sick and recovering, especially when you can’t afford to be sick. Of note, this is my approach. You know yourself, and you know when you need to see your physician.

Drum roll, please…

1. Hydrate. I’ve been a big fan of starting each day on an empty stomach with two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar mixed into a tall glass of water.

I’ve written about the wonders of ACV in the past. Google it and you’ll be amazed at what you uncover. It’s great for managing the body’s proper ph balance, which keeps us healthy. I drink my ACV following twenty minutes of oil pulling with coconut oil, where I swish it around my mouth before spitting it in the trash. Both of these practices kill a lot of bad bacteria. While under the weather I added another evening ACV drink before bedtime and it’s really helped me sleep. Most people walk around dehydrated so you can rarely go wrong when you consume lots of healthy fluids like coconut water, kombucha, rooibos tea, or filtered water. Forget the soda and the alcohol when you are sick. It will only make you feel worse. Another trick is peeling organic ginger roots, dumping them in a pan of water and brewing tea. I inhale the steam and then drink the tea. Ginger is anti-viral so it kills the bad germs in your nasal cavity and throat.

2. Rest and sleep. As obvious as this may seem, most of us live our lives on overdrive, rarely getting enough sleep when healthy, much less when we are under the weather.

As I have aged, I’ve put my health before anything. So if I need to work at home for a day, I will. We have email, texts, Dropbox, Skype and so many digital meeting apps that it’s really not really necessary to show up in the office unless there is a major client presentation. While at home, I rest and sleep. A lot. I nap (two or three hours in the afternoon) and hit the sack by 9pm. My body needs rest to heal. It’s not that complicated. I also set time aside for self-Reiki or meditation, both which work wonders for clearing one’s energy and allowing the body’s chi to flow.

3. Avoid media. My first day of being sick this week found me curled up on the couch watching bad television and scrolling my laptop.

Frankly, between the ads, violence, pre-game hype, reality shows, sports talk shows, fear-based news coverage, Facebook feeds, and stories about Donald Trump, it’s easy to get sick right there. I don’t listen to music when I’m sick. In fact, as soon as I shut off my television and computer, my mind and heart let out a sigh of relief.

4. Eat clean. Sugar is the enemy. It feeds sickness.

But, it’s everywhere and we crave it. My advice for eating when under the weather is to stick to organic and unprocessed foods. Lots of hot homemade soups, wild caught fish, and spicy foods that help you sweat out the toxins. I also take mega-doses of vitamin C, B12, and probiotics when I’m under the weather.

FYI, I left meat behind eight years ago and I will never go back. My energy has never been higher and my body does not have to work so hard breaking down animal tissue. The more energy I have for resting and recovery, the better. Face it, a bacon cheeseburger may taste great, but is not going to get you well.

5. Keep it simple. When you’re sick, your physical and energetic bodies should NOT take on any additional challenges.

In fact, the opposite may be a better tonic. Pare down your activities to the pure necessities and use as much of your time as possible for rest and recuperation.

These are a few of the basics for dealing with being sick. Did you notice that I did not mention any over the counter, prescription, or on the shelf symptom suppressing tablets or medicines? See a doctor if you need one. And there is probably a CVS close by. But whatever path you choose, make sure to take it easy, eat well, hydrate and get as much rest as possible.

It’s been a week now and I am still not one hundred percent better, but I’m on it— looking out for my body and getting lots of rest. What else can a Guy’s Guy do when he’s under the weather?

This week’s GUY’S GUY OF THE WEEK is Constantine Hering, the father of American homeopathy medicine.